Just in: Dame Granite wins a Gramo

Just in: Dame Granite wins a Gramo


norman lebrecht

October 06, 2011

Delighted to see on Guy Damann’s tweets that Dame Janet Baker has received a lifetime award from Gramophone magazine.

During the Lebrecht Interview this summer, she broke into a huge grin when I mentioned her nickname – ‘Dame Granite’ – and cheerfully acknowledged that she thought it her duty to come into work on the first day of rehearsal knowing not just her own part but everyone else’s by heart. She was the rock on which the opera world could always depend.

I am so thrilled that her lifetime record has been so warmly  recognised.

You can listen to the interview here.



  • Janet Baker is my favourite mezzo of all time. She is another singer who not only has a wonderful voice but is a highly gifted and intelligent musician. From your post she was obviously extremely conscientious into the bargain. Her award is very well deserved.

  • Laraine says:

    I was delighted to hear of this award, but ashamed to admit I have never heard Dame Janet referred to as Dame Granite, the humour of which she obviously appreciates. It’s a well deserved award. And good on her for pointedly mentioning (knowing Culture Secretary Ed Valzey was in the room) that young artists aren’t supported today as she was in her time. It’s a sad indictment on these hard times, I guess. But at least Britain must have some culture (or there wouldn’t be a Culture Secretary). The only culture in my country is the ubiquitous god Rugby. I’m fed up with him; I wish he’d go away forever.