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  • 15 December 2014 was the 9th anniversary of my first contributions to Wikipedia.

Short bio[edit]

I was born here (my parents lived here), moved to here (or thereabouts) at the age of 6 months, 6 months later to here, a year later to here, eighteen months after that to here, after another 6 months to here, where I started school at the age of 5, three years later to here and then to here, where I passed the eleven plus exam. In 1957, when the Suez Canal was impassible, I travelled on the SS Uganda via here, here, here, here, here to here, and thence to here (where I acquired my GCE Ordinary Level (United Kingdom) and my A-levels). Then a few months here, five years and a couple of degrees (this and that) here, where my tutor was this distinguished scholar and literary critic, a year each at here and here, where I collected another degree (the other) ... Then I had a nice rest - 30 years working as a librarian here, mostly on computer systems (anyone heard of Geac?) and administrative jobs. I took early retirement in 2001 and now live in central York.


My main leisure interest is opera - going to see it, listening to it, reading about it, writing or improving Wikipedia articles about it. So far, I've actually seen 400 different operas in live professional staged productions with orchestra, almost all of them in Great Britain and Ireland.

My Wikipedia username, for those who don't know, is the French version of the name of the legendary William Tell and the title-character of the opera by Gioachino Rossini. Coincidentally, the most recent (400th) opera that I've now at last seen on stage - in Birmingham (and somewhat cut) - was Guillaume Tell, sung in French.

Below are two lists of composers and their operas, all of which I have seen on various stages.

Giuseppe Verdi, 23 operas: Oberto, Un giorno di regno, Nabucco, I Lombardi alla prima crociata, Jérusalem, Ernani, Giovanna d'Arco, I masnadieri, I due Foscari, Attila, Luisa Miller, Macbeth, La traviata, Il trovatore, Rigoletto, Un ballo in maschera, Sicilian Vespers, La forza del destino, Simon Boccanegra, Don Carlos, Aida, Otello, Falstaff

Gioachino Rossini, 19 operas: L'occasione fa il ladro, The Barber of Seville, La Cenerentola, La gazza ladra, L'italiana in Algeri, Il turco in Italia, Le comte Ory, Elisabetta, regina d'Inghilterra, La pietra del paragone, La donna del lago, Mosè in Egitto, Tancredi, Il viaggio a Reims, Ermione, Otello, Matilde di Shabran, La cambiale di matrimonio, Maometto II, William Tell

Gaetano Donizetti, 15 operas: L'elisir d'amore, Don Pasquale, Lucia di Lammermoor, Maria Stuarda, L'assedio di Calais, La favorite, Parisina, Maria Padilla, Maria di Rohan, La fille du régiment, Roberto Devereux, Anna Bolena, Lucrezia Borgia, Gianni di Parigi, Poliuto

Benjamin Britten, 13 operas: Paul Bunyan, Peter Grimes, Albert Herring, The Rape of Lucretia, Gloriana, Billy Budd, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Turn of the Screw, Curlew River, The Burning Fiery Furnace, The Prodigal Son, Owen Wingrave, Death in Venice

Arthur Sullivan, 12 operas: Cox and Box, Trial by Jury, The Sorcerer, H.M.S. Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance, Patience, Iolanthe, Princess Ida, The Mikado, Ruddigore, The Yeomen of the Guard, The Gondoliers

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, 11 operas: Il re pastore, Mitridate, re di Ponto, La finta giardiniera, The Jewel Box, Idomeneo, Die Entführung aus dem Serail, The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni, Così fan tutte, The Magic Flute, La clemenza di Tito

Richard Wagner, 11 operas: Das Liebesverbot, The Flying Dutchman, Tannhäuser, Lohengrin, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Tristan und Isolde, Parsifal, Das Rheingold, Die Walküre, Siegfried, Götterdämmerung

Giacomo Puccini, 10 operas: La bohème, Madama Butterfly, Tosca, Turandot, La fanciulla del West, Manon Lescaut, Il tabarro, Suor Angelica, Gianni Schicchi, La rondine

Richard Strauss, 10 operas: Salome, Elektra, Der Rosenkavalier, Ariadne auf Naxos, Arabella, Die Frau ohne Schatten, Die schweigsame Frau, Intermezzo, Daphne, Capriccio

George Frideric Handel, 9 operas: Il pastor fido, Giulio Cesare, Serse, Rodelinda, Tamerlano, Ariodante, Radamisto, Orlando, Alcina

Leoš Janáček, 7 operas: Destiny (Janáček), Jenůfa, The Excursions of Mr. Brouček to the Moon and to the 15th Century, Káťa Kabanová, The Cunning Little Vixen, The Makropulos Affair, From the House of the Dead

Jules Massenet, 7 operas: Manon, Werther, Le jongleur de Notre-Dame, Cendrillon, Don Quichotte, Sapho, La Navarraise

Kurt Weill, 7 operas: The Threepenny Opera, Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, Love Life, One Touch of Venus, Der Kuhhandel, Der Silbersee, Street Scene

Christoph Willibald Gluck, 6 operas: Orfeo ed Euridice, Alceste, Iphigénie en Tauride, La rencontre imprévue, Iphigénie en Aulide, Armide

Sergei Prokofiev, 6 operas: The Love for Three Oranges, War and Peace, The Fiery Angel, Betrothal in a Monastery, Semyon Kotko, The Gambler

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, 6 operas: The Queen of Spades, Eugene Onegin, Mazeppa, Iolanta, Cherevichki, The Maid of Orleans

Vincenzo Bellini, 5 operas: I puritani, Norma, I Capuleti e i Montecchi, La straniera, La sonnambula

Jacques Offenbach, 5 operas: The Tales of Hoffmann, La belle Hélène, Barbe-bleue, Orpheus in the Underworld, La Périchole

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, 5 operas: The Golden Cockerel, May Night, The Snow Maiden, The Tsar's Bride, Kashchey the Deathless

Michael Tippett, 5 operas: The Midsummer Marriage, King Priam, The Knot Garden, New Year, The Ice Break

Hector Berlioz, 4 operas: Les Troyens, Béatrice et Bénédict, La damnation de Faust, Benvenuto Cellini

Harrison Birtwistle, 4 operas: Gawain, Punch and Judy, The Minotaur, Down by the Greenwood Side

Georges Bizet, 4 operas: Carmen, Les pêcheurs de perles, Djamileh, The Fair Maid of Perth

Saverio Mercadante, 4 operas: Elena da Feltre, Il giuramento, La vestale, Virginia

Claudio Monteverdi, 4 operas: L'incoronazione di Poppea, L'Orfeo, Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria, Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda

Carl Maria von Weber, 4 operas: Der Freischütz, Oberon, Euryanthe, Die drei Pintos

Ferruccio Busoni, 3 operas: Doktor Faust, Turandot, Arlecchino

Emmanuel Chabrier, 3 operas: L'étoile, Le roi malgré lui, Une éducation manquée

Domenico Cimarosa, 3 operas: Le astuzie femminili, Il matrimonio segreto, Il maestro di cappella

Antonin Dvorak, 3 operas: The Jacobin, Rusalka, The Devil and Kate

George Gershwin, 3 operas: Porgy and Bess, Of Thee I Sing, Let 'Em Eat Cake

Charles Gounod, 3 operas: Faust, Roméo et Juliette, La colombe

Ruggero Leoncavallo, 3 operas: Pagliacci, Zazà, La bohème

Pietro Mascagni, 3 operas: Cavalleria rusticana, Il piccolo Marat, Iris

Giacomo Meyerbeer, 3 operas: L'Africaine, L'étoile du nord, Robert le diable

Francis Poulenc, 3 operas: Dialogues of the Carmelites, La voix humaine, Les mamelles de Tirésias

Sergei Rachmaninov, 3 operas: The Miserly Knight, Francesca da Rimini, Aleko

Dmitri Shostakovich, 3 operas: The Nose, Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Paradise Moscow

Bedrich Smetana, 3 operas: The Bartered Bride, Dalibor, The Kiss

Igor Stravinsky, 3 operas: The Rake's Progress, Oedipus Rex, The Nightingale

Ambroise Thomas, 3 operas: Hamlet, Mignon, La cour de Célimène

John Adams, 2 operas: The Death of Klinghoffer, Nixon in China; Thomas Adès, 2 operas: The Tempest, Powder Her Face; Alban Berg, 2 operas: Wozzeck, Lulu; Michael Berkeley, 2 operas: Baa Baa Black Sheep, For You;

Leonard Bernstein, 2 operas: Candide, Trouble in Tahiti; Francesco Cavalli, 2 operas: Ormindo, Orion;

Francesco Cilea, 2 operas: Adriana Lecouvreur, L'Arlesiana; Peter Maxwell Davies, 2 operas: The Lighthouse; Eight Songs for a Mad King

Jonathan Dove, 2 operas: The Adventures of Pinocchio, Swanhunter; Flotow, 2 operas: Martha, Alessandro Stradella

Joseph Haydn, 2 operas: L'infedeltà delusa, La fedeltà premiata; Hans Werner Henze, 2 operas: Elegy for Young Lovers, Boulevard Solitude

Engelbert Humperdinck, 2 operas: Hansel and Gretel, Königskinder; Heinrich Marschner, 2 operas: Der Templer und die Jüdin, Der Vampyr

Bohuslav Martinů, 2 operas: Julietta, Mirandolina; André Messager, 2 operas: Véronique, Fortunio

Modest Mussorgsky, 2 operas: Boris Godunov, Khovanshchina; Henry Purcell, 2 operas: Dido and Aeneas, King Arthur Maurice Ravel, 2 operas: L'enfant et les sortilèges, L'heure espagnole; Camille Saint-Saëns, 2 operas: Samson and Delilah, La princesse jaune

Mark-Anthony Turnage, 2 operas: Anna Nicole, Greek; Riccardo Zandonai, 2 operas: I cavalieri di Ekebù, Conchita

Other operas that I have seen on stage are listed below; composers are arranged alphabetically[edit]

Adolphe Adam: Si j'étais roi; Peter Ash: The Golden Ticket; Daniel Auber: Manon Lescaut; Béla Bartok: Bluebeard's Castle; Luke Bedford: Through his teeth; Ludwig van Beethoven: Fidelio; Jiří Antonín Benda: Romeo und Julie; George Benjamin: Into the Little Hill; Richard Rodney Bennett: The Mines of Sulphur; François-Adrien Boieldieu: La dame blanche; Arrigo Boito: Mefistofele; Alexander Borodin: Prince Igor; Walter Braunfels: Prinzessin Brambilla; Antonio Cagnoni: Don Bucefalo; Alfredo Catalani: La Wally; Gustave Charpentier: Louise; Luigi Cherubini: Médée; Tim Coker: Walking not Driving; Peter Cornelius: Der Barbier von Bagdad; Alexander Dargomyzhsky: Rusalka; Claude Debussy: Pelléas et Mélisande; Frederick Delius: A Village Romeo and Juliet; Paul Dukas: Ariane et Barbe-bleue; Péter Eötvös: Der goldene Drache; Manuel de Falla: La vida breve; Gabriel Fauré: Pénélope; Carlisle Floyd: Susannah; Josef Bohuslav Foerster: Eva; Jacopo Foroni: Cristina, regina di Svezia; John Gay: The Beggar's Opera; Giuseppe Gazzaniga: Don Giovanni Tenorio; Roberto Gerhard: The Duenna; Umberto Giordano: Siberia; Detlev Glanert: Caligula; Heiner Goebbels: I went to the house but did not enter; Hermann Goetz: Der Widerspänstigen Zähmung; Karl Goldmark: Die Königin von Saba; Antônio Carlos Gomes: Fosca; Enrique Granados: María del Carmen; Heinz Karl Gruber: Gloria, a pig-tale; Pavel Haas: Šarlatán; Jonathan Harvey: Wagner Dream; Ferdinand Hérold: Zampa; Simon Holt: The Nightingale's to Blame; Wilfred Josephs: Rebecca; Reinhard Keiser: Croesus; Jerome Kern: Show Boat; Oliver Knussen: Where the Wild Things Are; Zoltán Kodály: Háry János; Erich Wolfgang Korngold: Die tote Stadt; Ernst Krenek: Jonny spielt auf; Franz Lehár: The Merry Widow; György Ligeti: Le Grand Macabre; Frank Loesser: Guys and Dolls; Albert Lortzing: Der Wildschütz; James MacMillan: Inés de Castro; Antoine Mariotte: Salomé; Benedict Mason: Playing Away; Nicholas Maw:The Rising of the Moon; Gian Carlo Menotti:The Telephone; Stanisław Moniuszko: The Haunted Manor; Otto Nicolai: The Merry Wives of Windsor; Carl Nielsen: Maskarade; Giovanni Pacini: Saffo; Giovanni Paisiello: The Barber of Seville; Carlo Pedrotti: Tutti in maschera; Hans Pfitzner: Palestrina; Julian Philips: The Yellow Sofa; Astor Piazzolla: María de Buenos Aires; Amilcare Ponchielli: La Gioconda; Kevin Puts: Silent Night; Jean-Philippe Rameau: Hippolyte et Aricie; Ottorino Respighi: La fiamma; Richard Rodgers: Carousel; Nino Rota: Il cappello di paglia di Firenze; Anton Rubinstein: The Demon; Poul Ruders: The Handmaid's Tale; David Sawer: Skin Deep; Arnold Schoenberg: Moses und Aron; Franz Schreker: Der ferne Klang; Robert Schumann: Genoveva; Salvatore Sciarrino: Luci mie traditrici; Jean Sibelius: Jungfrun i tornet (The Maiden in the Tower); Stephen Sondheim: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street; Roman Statkowski: Maria; Stephen Storace: Gli equivoci; Johann Strauss II: Die Fledermaus; Karol Szymanowski: King Roger; Georg Philipp Telemann: Pimpinone; Antonio Vivaldi: Griselda; William Walton: Troilus and Cressida; Mieczysław Weinberg: The Portrait; Jaromír Weinberger: Schwanda the Bagpiper; Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari: Il segreto di Susanna; Alexander von Zemlinsky: Der Zwerg.

Other interests[edit]

I'm also interested in local history (specifically York and Leeds), architecture and townscape, food and drink and all sorts of other stuff.

Countries in which I've lived or spent at least one night[edit]

 England  Scotland  Wales  Ireland  Kenya  Tanzania  France
 Spain  Italy  Germany  Austria  Greece   Switzerland  Belgium
 Turkey  Portugal  USA  Russia  Netherlands  Hungary  Croatia

Intermittent current activity[edit]

Working on the The opera corpus as follows:

  • check/upgrade articles for certain important operas that I've seen:

Le comte Ory, Doktor Faust, Die drei Pintos, Ermione, Euryanthe, Der ferne Klang, Hamlet (opera), The Haunted Manor, Jérusalem, Palestrina (opera), Troilus and Cressida (opera)

  • check/upgrade articles for other operas that I've seen

Le astuzie femminili, Il barbiere di Siviglia (Paisiello), I cavalieri di Ekebù, Conchita, Demon (opera), Don Giovanni Tenorio, La donna del lago, Elena da Feltre, Elisabetta, regina d'Inghilterra, Gli equivoci, La fedeltà premiata, La fiamma, Il giuramento, Greek (opera), Griselda (Vivaldi), L'infedeltà delusa, Jonny spielt auf, Julietta, Die Königin von Saba, The Lighthouse (opera), Madame Favart, Il maestro di capella, Mirandolina, Moscow, Cheryomushki, L'occasione fa il ladro, Pénélope, La pietra del paragone, Pimpinone, Prinzessin Brambilla, Saffo, Siberia (opera), Le testament de la tante Caroline, Turandot (Busoni), La vestale (Mercadante), A Village Romeo and Juliet, Violanta, Der Widerspänstigen Zähmung,

  • create articles for the following:

Angels in America, Baa, Baa, Black Sheep (opera), The Duenna (Gerhard), Eva (opera), For You (opera), Higglety Pigglety Pop!, I went to the house but did not enter, Inés de Castro (MacMillan), Into the Little Hill, Maria del Carmen, Moïse et Pharaon, ou Le passage de la Mer Rouge, Orion (opera), Playing Away (Mason), Rebecca (opera), Skin Deep, Swanhunter

Articles created or to which I've made a very substantial contribution[edit]

Google search of Wikipedia etc.[edit]

Cite Book refs[edit]



  • Bradley, Simon (1997). London 1: The City of London. London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071092-2.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Bradley, Simon (2003). London 6: Westminster. New Haven and London: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-09595-3.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Brooks, Alan (2007). Worcestershire. New Haven and London: Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-11298-6.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Cherry, Bridget (1983). London 2: South. London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071048-5.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Cherry, Bridget (1991). London 3: North West. London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071047-7.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Cherry, Bridget (1998). London 4: North. London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071049-3.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Cherry, Bridget (2005). London 5: East. New Haven and London: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-10701-3.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Grundy, John (1992). Northumberland. London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-0710590.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Leach, Peter (2009). Yorkshire West Riding: Leeds, Bradford and the North. New Haven and London: Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-12665-5.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Newman, John (1969). North East and East Kent. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. 
  • Newman, John (1969). West Kent and the Weald. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. 
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1966). Berkshire. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. 
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1994) [1960]. Buckinghamshire (2nd ed.). London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071062-0.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1983) [1953]. County Durham (2nd ed.). London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071009-4.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1967). Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. London: Penguin Books.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1958). North Somerset and Bristol. London: Penguin Books. 
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1979) [1951]. Nottinghamshire (2nd ed.). London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071002-7.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1966). Yorkshire: The North Riding. London: Penguin Books. 
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1967) [1959]. Yorkshire: The West Riding (2nd ed.). London: Penguin Books.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus (1995) [1972]. Yorkshire: York and the East Riding (2nd ed.). London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071061-2.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Sherwood, Jennifer (1974). Oxfordshire. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-071045-0.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Verey, David (1999). Gloucstershire 1: The Cotswolds. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-09604-6.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Verey, David (2002). Gloucstershire 2: The Vale and the Forest of Dean. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-09733-6.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Wrathmell, Susan (2005). Leeds (Pevsner Architectural Guides). New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-10736-6.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)


Other books on architecture, buildings, etc.[edit]

  • Beard, Geoffrey (1966). Georgian Craftsmen and their Work. London: Country Life Limited. 
  • Colvin, Howard (2008) [1954]. A Biographical Dictionary of English Architects 1660-1840 (4th ed.). New Haven and London: Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-12508-5. 
  • Dixon, Roger (1978). Victorian Architecture. London: Thames and Hudson.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)
  • Linstrum, Derek (1978). West Yorkshire Architects and Architecture. London: Lund Humphries Publishers. ISBN 0-85331-410-1. 


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