Davies, Mary


A well-known soprano, who was born in London, of Welsh parents. While singing at the Welsh concerts in London she attracted the attention of Edith Wynne, the singer, and Brinley Richards, both of whom instructed her. She won the Welsh Choral Union Scholarship in 1873 and studied at the Royal Academy of Music, winning the Parepa-Rosa gold medal in 1876, and the Nilsson prize in 1877. She appeared with success, in 1878, at the Worcester Festival, and sang at the Gloucester Festival in 1883 and also at the Norwich and Chester Festivals. She sang in the first complete performance of Berlioz's Faust in England, under Halle, at Manchester in 1880 and the same year repeated the performance at St. James Hall. She also sang the part of Elsie, in the cantata, The Fisher Maidens, and the part of Mary in the production of Berlioz's Childhood of Christ at the Crystal Palace in 1886. She has been heard often in oratorio, of which she appeared to be especially fond. She sang in The Messiah, St. Paul, and the Hymn of Praise with striking success, at Liverpool, Manchester, Glasgow and Birmingham. She was heard in the United States, at the World's Fair, in 1893. She is perhaps best known as a ballad-singer and has been heard in the many con- certs throughout England. Her voice is a mezzo, of limited power, but intensely sweet. She was elected first an associate, then a fellow of the Royal Academy of Music. In 1888 she married W. Cadwalader Davies, and in 1900 retired from the concert stage.