Home > Artists > Liborio Prosperi > Artwork

(click image to enlarge)

Mr Edward Lloyd 'English Tenor'

Lib (Liborio Prosperi) (1854-1928)


Inscribed with title on reverse

Watercolour and bodycolour on board

12 x 6 ½ inches

A G Witherby;
Stanley Jackson;
The John Franks Collection

Vanity Fair, 25 June 1892, Men of The Day no 541, 'English Tenor'

Chris Beetles & Alexander Beetles (eds.) Portraits of Vanity Fair: The Charles Sigety Collection, London: Chris Beetles Ltd, 2023, page 99

'Portraits of Vanity Fair: The Charles Sigety Collection', Chris Beetles Gallery, London, October-November 2023, no 48

As a tenor singer, Edward Lloyd (1845-1927) was considered to be the main successor of Sims Reeves as the country’s leading tenor. In 1877, he replaced Sims Reeves for the Handel Triennial Festival at the Crystal Palace and would participate in every subsequent festival until his retirement in 1900. He created many of the great tenor roles in late Victorian oratorio and concert works, such as in The Martyr of Antioch in 1880 and Arthur Sullivan’s The Golden Legend in 1886. He gave is farewell performance at the Royal Albert Hall in 1900, but came out of retirement to sing at the coronation of George V in 1911.

“It is seven-and-forty years since he began shrilly to exercise that voice by the gift of which unequal Nature has made him famous. His first notes were heard in the neighbourhood of Kennington; but even at the early age of seven he was too good a vocalist for the mere edification of his humble playmates. So he was promoted from the nursery to the Choir of Westminster Abbey; and being a good, steady little boy, with no greatly developed taste for mischief, he got on, and was presently improved into solo tenor at the St James’s Chapel Royal. Then he left the Church to come before the more secular public at Novello’s Concerts; and more than twenty years ago he made his mark at a Gloucester Festival where, with the aid of Bach’s ‘Passion’ music, he sang himself into popular favour. Since then he has sung wherever it is worth a man’s while to sing; until he has come to be looked upon as the first of English tenors.

He may not be all that Sims Reeves once was; but his artistic excellence is so complete that he can command higher terms for a song than any other English rival. He has made two successful tours, after the modern style, in the United States; and he has but just returned from New York in time to show what he can do in a great part at the Crystal Palace to-day.

He is growing fat.”

Related Artwork