It is well known that Benjamin Britten chose an American, Theodor Uppman, as his first Billy Budd.
Less well known is that he handpicked an American to sing the title role in the first US production in 1949 of the village-hall comedy, Albert Herring.
The young man who caught his eye was David Lloyd Jenkins, a Minnesota tenor at New York City Opera. Jenkins also caught the ear of Leonard Bernstein, who cast him in a best-selling recording of Handel’s Messiah. After Jenkins gave up the stage, he became director of the American Opera Center at Juilliard, a trainer of future talent.
David Lloyd Jenkins died on Friday, aged 92.