Contents 1 Biography 2 Recordings 3 Death 4 Legacy 5 Sources 6 References 7 External links

Biography[edit] He was born the second son of Alexander and Elizabeth Crooks on June 26, 1900 in Trenton, New Jersey. Following several concert seasons as an oratorio and song recital specialist, including the American premier of Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde, he traveled to Germany where he made his operatic debut in Hamburg as Cavaradossi in Puccini's Tosca in 1927. After his tour in other European cities such as Berlin, Crooks returned to the United States and made his American debut in 1930 in Philadelphia. He became a star of the Metropolitan Opera, specializing in French and Italian operas. He participated in the farewell gala on March 29, 1936, for Spanish soprano Lucrezia Bori, which was broadcast nationally and preserved on transcription discs.[citation needed] From 1928 to 1945, Crooks was the host of "The Voice of Firestone" radio broadcasts, in which he sang operatic arias, patriotic songs, folk songs, and popular hits such as "People Will Say We're in Love" from Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma! in 1943. He also appeared on radio broadcasts with Bing Crosby, who remained a friend until Crooks's death.[citation needed] Health problems forced Crooks to retire in early 1945. He continued to sing, however, at his church and elsewhere. Some of his performances were taped. He had married his childhood sweetheart and spent his later years in Portola Valley, California. An entire room in his house was devoted to framed, autographed photographs of singers, conductors, and U.S. presidents he had known. In conversations, he often praised two of the other great tenors he had heard in person: Enrico Caruso and Jussi Björling.[citation needed]

Recordings[edit] Aside from an unreleased disc for Columbia, Crooks recorded primarily for the Victor Talking Machine Company, and later RCA Victor. His first recordings date from the mid-1920s and were devoted mainly to operetta, especially ensemble medley recordings by the "Victor Light Opera Company." Among these early electric recordings was a medley of The Student Prince by Sigmund Romberg, in which Crooks and Lambert Murphy alternated on the "Serenade." Most of Crooks's early Victor recordings appeared on the popular music black label. Crooks also made some recordings for Victor's German subsidiary, Electrola, during the late 1920s. By the late 1920s, when Crooks's operatic recordings were released, he was promoted to the prestigious Red Seal label. Crooks often said that his personal favorite was a 1928 recording of two arias by Richard Wagner: "In fernem Land" from Lohengrin and the "Prize Song" from Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg. Crooks recorded a complete version of Schubert's Die schöne Müllerin in c.1934 (one of the early attempts to do so) with his teacher Frank LaForge at the piano, of which only numbers 1-3, 7-8, and 13-19 of the 20 songs were issued, and that not until 1941: the complete recording with the missing titles was issued on CD in 1997.[2] Crooks also enjoyed making an album of Stephen Foster songs, which used authentic arrangements to recapture a vanished era of American music. In early 1942, he released a recording of César Franck's "Panis Angelicus" in the original Latin; the recording has been included in Nimbus Records' Prima Voce Christmas compilation The Spirit of Christmas Past. Among his last commercial recordings, made in January 1945, was a patriotic song called The Americans Come, which he had actually recorded as a teenager for Columbia.[citation needed] The Metropolitan Opera has issued a number of recorded performances featuring Crooks on LP and CD. One of his most memorable radio broadcasts was a 1940 Met performance of Gounod's Faust with Crooks in the title role; Helen Jepson sang Marguerite and Ezio Pinza sang Méphistophélès. Naxos Records issued the performance on CD, conducted by Wilfrid Pelletier, as taken from the original NBC master transcriptions.[3] His final private recordings were made in 1967 and 1968. The recordings of Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (J. S. Bach) and For You With Love (Elinor Remick Warren) were made at a wedding in Southern California on April 8, 1967. The notes for the Delos CD erroneously state that these were Richard Crooks last recordings. Actually, on November 15, 1968, Crooks sang in a performance with the Portola Valley United Presbyterian Church Choir at the Sequoias in Redwood City. On the recording, he sings "Panis Angelicus" (in English) and Seek Ye The Lord.[4] Throughout the LP era, RCA Victor issued several albums highlighting several of Crooks's operatic arias and songs from the 1920s and 1930s. In 1969, RCA re-released a recording of Stainer’s The Crucifixion, originally issued by RCA Victor in 1929, which featured Crooks, Lawrence Tibbett, the Trinity Choir, and Mark Andrews at the organ. Delos has released a two-CD set of Crooks recordings, produced in cooperation with the Stanford Archives of Recorded Sound, including some performances that were never issued commercially. They also included the 1967 recordings. There have been additional CDs released by ASV and Jewel, which show the great diversity of Crooks's recordings, including selections from operettas and popular songs.

Death[edit] He was diagnosed with cancer in the mid-1960s and battled the disease until his death. He died on September 29, 1972 in Portola Valley, California, aged 72.[1]

Legacy[edit] For his work in recording, Crooks was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; located at 1648 Vine St. The Los Angeles Times, which has documented and photographed every star on the Walk as part of its ongoing Hollywood Star Walk project, has been unable to find Crooks' star (or the one for the film career of Geraldine Farrar). It is unknown if Crooks' star has been removed, or was never installed in the first place, or was simply overlooked by the Times crew.

Sources[edit] Delos CD and liner notes RCA Victrola LP and liner notes Interviews with Crooks, 1967–72

References[edit] ^ a b "Richard Crooks, Tenor at the Met, Dies". New York Times. October 1, 1972. Retrieved 2011-03-28. Richard Crooks, the tenor who was for many years a star of the Metropolitan Opera in New York and for 14 years the featured singer on radio's "The Voice of Firestone  ^ Originals: RCA Victor Red Seal 78rpm 11-9251 to 9253: reissue Delos CD B00000072Q. See Uncle Dave Lewis, Allmusic [1] ^ Gounod: Faust: Charles Gounod, Wilfrid Pelletier, New York Metropolitan Opera Chorus, New York Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Richard Crooks, Helen Jepson, Ezio Pinza, Leonard Warren: Music ^ Charles A. Riddell

External links[edit] Media related to Richard Crooks at Wikimedia Commons History of the Tenor - Sound Clips and Narration Richard and Mildred Crooks Collection (ARS.0004), Stanford Archive of Recorded Sound Authority control WorldCat Identities VIAF: 49413943 LCCN: no93003543 ISNI: 0000 0000 5518 061X GND: 134352521 BNF: cb139509777 (data) BIBSYS: 4017438 MusicBrainz: fd05c4d3-6a2f-4901-93b8-8c65c4122546 SNAC: w6dr41kp Retrieved from "" Categories: American operatic tenorsMusicians from Trenton, New JerseySingers from New JerseyClassical music radio presentersDeaths from cancer in California1900 births1972 deaths20th-century American singers20th-century opera singersPeople from Portola Valley, CaliforniaHidden categories: All articles with unsourced statementsArticles with unsourced statements from September 2011Wikipedia articles with VIAF identifiersWikipedia articles with LCCN identifiersWikipedia articles with ISNI identifiersWikipedia articles with GND identifiersWikipedia articles with BNF identifiersWikipedia articles with BIBSYS identifiersWikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiersWikipedia articles with SNAC-ID identifiers

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Richard M. CrooksEnlargeUnited StatesTenorMetropolitan OperaTrenton, New JerseyOratorioGustav MahlerDas Lied Von Der ErdeGermanyOperaHamburgGiacomo PucciniToscaBerlinUnited StatesPhiladelphiaLucrezia BoriAcetate DiscWikipedia:Citation NeededThe Voice Of FirestoneFolk MusicRodgers And HammersteinOklahoma!Bing CrosbyWikipedia:Citation NeededPortola Valley, CaliforniaEnrico CarusoJussi BjörlingWikipedia:Citation NeededColumbia RecordsVictor Talking Machine CompanyRCA VictorOperettaThe Student PrinceSigmund RombergLambert MurphyRichard WagnerLohengrin (opera)Die Meistersinger Von NürnbergFranz SchubertDie Schöne MüllerinFrank LaForgeStephen FosterCésar FranckPanis AngelicusNimbus RecordsWikipedia:Citation NeededMetropolitan OperaCharles GounodFaust (opera)Helen JepsonEzio PinzaNaxos RecordsWilfrid PelletierNBCJesu, Joy Of Man's DesiringJohann Sebastian BachDelos InternationalRedwood City, CaliforniaJohn StainerThe Crucifixion (Stainer)Lawrence TibbettDelos InternationalPortola Valley, CaliforniaHollywood Walk Of FameLos Angeles TimesGeraldine FarrarDelos InternationalNew York TimesCommons:Category:Richard CrooksHelp:Authority ControlVirtual International Authority FileLibrary Of Congress Control NumberInternational Standard Name IdentifierIntegrated Authority FileBibliothèque Nationale De FranceBIBSYSMusicBrainzSNACHelp:CategoryCategory:American Operatic TenorsCategory:Musicians From Trenton, New JerseyCategory:Singers From New JerseyCategory:Classical Music Radio PresentersCategory:Deaths From Cancer In CaliforniaCategory:1900 BirthsCategory:1972 DeathsCategory:20th-century American SingersCategory:20th-century Opera SingersCategory:People From Portola Valley, CaliforniaCategory:All Articles With Unsourced StatementsCategory:Articles With Unsourced Statements From September 2011Category:Wikipedia Articles With VIAF IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With LCCN IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With ISNI IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With GND IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With BNF IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With BIBSYS IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With MusicBrainz IdentifiersCategory:Wikipedia Articles With SNAC-ID IdentifiersDiscussion About Edits From This IP Address [n]A List Of Edits Made From This IP Address [y]View The Content Page [c]Discussion About The Content Page [t]Edit This Page [e]Visit The Main Page [z]Guides To Browsing WikipediaFeatured Content – The Best Of WikipediaFind Background Information On Current EventsLoad A Random Article [x]Guidance On How To Use And Edit WikipediaFind Out About WikipediaAbout The Project, What You Can Do, Where To Find ThingsA List Of Recent Changes In The Wiki [r]List Of All English Wikipedia Pages Containing Links To This Page [j]Recent Changes In Pages Linked From This Page [k]Upload Files [u]A List Of All Special Pages [q]Wikipedia:AboutWikipedia:General Disclaimer

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