Craig Campbell (tenor)

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Giuseppe Cremonini

Robert Craig Campbell (1878–1965) was a Canadian tenor who performed in operettas across Canada and the United States. Campbell recorded with the Columbia, Davega, Perfect and Pathé labels.[1] Although a tenor, Campbell had a very rich voice and could also sing baritone, and described himself as a tenore robusto.[2]


Campbell was born in London, Ontario to Alexander and Elizabeth Campbell in 1878.[2] While Campbell was young, the family moved several times, living in Hamilton and Owen Sound before settling down in Winnipeg. His first performance on stage took place in Winnipeg, when he performed for the High School Literary Society.


Campbell made a formal debut in 1909 in the role of Alfred Blake in The Love Cure by Edmund Eysler at the New Amsterdam Theatre.[1] He began touring the United States and Canada as a vaudeville tenor on the Keith-Orpheum and Loew tour circuits.[2] In 1912, Campbell starred as Jack Travers in the first production of Rudolf Friml's operetta The Firefly, which was performed at the Lyric Theatre. The female lead was Emma Trentini. This would lead to Campbell's first recording, when he recorded the song A Woman's Smile from this play for the Columbia Record Company.

Campbell became a member of the American Society of Singers in 1914. Campbell began giving performances in American opera halls and on concert stages. He appeared as a lead with Julia Claussen in Faust and Helena at the New York Symphony Orchestra in 1918.[2] The next year, he sang Die Fledermaus with the St. Louis Municipal Opera. In 1931, he sang the role of Dick Dauntless in Ruddigore which was performed in Erlanger's Theater. Campbell retired from the stage sometime in the late 1930s, but continued to perform as an amateur in St. John's Episcopal Church's choir in Jersey City, New Jersey until 1954.[1] He died in New York in 1965.


A Woman's Smile


  1. ^ a b c Helmut Kallmann. "United States of America". Encyclopedia of Music in Canada. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Craig Campbell, tenor (1878-1965)". Collections Canada. 2005-07-18. 
  3. ^ "A dream [sound recording] / Bartlett ; [Cory]". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  4. ^ "A woman's smile [sound recording] / Rudolf Friml ; [Harbach] ; [Kahn]". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  5. ^ "Oh! That we two were maying [sound recording] / Alice Mary Smith". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  6. ^ "Good-bye [sound recording] / Tosti". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  7. ^ "I mind the day [sound recording] / Willeby". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  8. ^ "Silver threads among the gold [sound recording] / Danks ; [Rexford]". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  9. ^ "We've been chums for fifty years [sound recording] / Chattaway". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  10. ^ "Who knows? [sound recording] / Ball ; [Dunbar]". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  11. ^ "The banks of Allan Water [sound recording] / Horn [arranger]". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  12. ^ "Bonnie sweet Bessie [sound recording] / Root ; Gilbert". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21. 
  13. ^ "Believe me, if all those endearing young charms [sound recording] / Moore ; Stevenson". Collections Canada. 2005-06-21.