Tragic news: Dmitri Hvorostovsky has died

Tragic news: Dmitri Hvorostovsky has died


norman lebrecht

November 22, 2017

The great Russian baritone died early today in London at the age of 55.

He had been suffering with brain cancer for the past two years, remaining cheerful and positive to the end. He retired from opera performance last December.

He was last seen singing in concert with his arm in a sling.

His death was announced by the family: ‘On behalf of the Hvorostovsky family, it is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Dmitri Hvorostovsky – beloved operatic baritone, husband, father, son, and friend – at age 55. After a two-and-a-half-year battle with brain cancer, he died peacefully this morning, November 22, surrounded by family near his home in London, UK. May the warmth of his voice and his spirit always be with us.’

He is survived by his wife, Florence, and their children, Maxim and Nina, by twins from a previous marriage and by his parents, Alexander and Lyudmila.

He had been a star of the international opera stage for quarter of a century. The singing world is in shock.

Tribute: What we have lost in Dmitri Hvorostovsky

UPDATE: Singers mourn Dima.

Putin sends condolences.

Response from Bryn Terfel.

Help his family raise funds to beat cancer.


  • Anonymous says:

    He was a great artist! RIP!

  • Malcolm James says:

    That is tragic, but sadly not unexpected, news. My condolences to his family.

  • Richard Craig says:

    What a truly great loss,he had a fantastic voice,and will be greatly missed

  • OldSchool says:

    We had the good fortune, to see the dress rehearsal at the Met of his Yeletsky in Pique Dame, with Domingo. We were not in town for performances.

    One of the most beautiful baritone voices, with among the most graceful performances.

  • Janne Seppänen says:

    Tragic indeed. I’m currently listening to his recording of Mussorgsky’s Songs and Dances of Death as a little tribute.

    Rest in peace.

  • AndyB says:

    I have such a beautiful memory of Dmitri singing in Dame de Pique at the Acropolis Theatre in Nice. He had recently come to prominence through the Cardiff competition. It was wonderful to stand on stage and drink in the sound of that voice at every performance. A charming person too. He will be greatly missed. My condolences to his family and may he rest in peace.

  • Jean says:

    He will be missed. R.I.P.

  • Igor Kennaway says:

    Way back in 1989, when we were both engaged at the Opéra de Nice, both of us for the first time. We spent some time together. He knew nobody at that time in the West and Nice was his first engagement after winning the Cardiff Singer of the Year. He seemed rather lonely. He was starting rehearsals for ‘The Queen of Spades’ I seem to recall. I was doing “Don Giovanni”. I invited him to have lunch with me and we ate somewhere in the environs of the Flower Market, just round the corner from the opera house. He was charming and unassuming and made a lasting impression on me as a person of warmth. My condolences to his family.

  • ben LEGEBEKE says:

    I saw him in 2010 in Vitebsk, Belarus. He gave a recital at the ‘ Slaviansky Bazaar’festival. He sung old Russian songs & romances. Everything with a smile and of course beautiful voice….

  • V. Lind says:

    A massive loss. Time spent with him was always fun, and his performances were unforgettable. Too soon — we should have had another couple of decades of Dima at full strength. RIP.

  • Ungeheuer says:

    Sad news. RIP. Gone too soon.

  • boringfileclerk says:

    Very sad news. He was a great talent who left us too soon.

  • Derek says:

    Very sad news. He was a magnificent singer with real warmth. R.I.P.

  • Simon says:

    Very sad news. He was the last of a generation the truly embody the verdi baritone. What a loss as a real wonderful human being.

  • Tatyana Gubanov says:

    My Deepest condolences to family, beound sad ,can’t believe tragic news ,too young…
    We all keep the greatest memory we all share, listening His MAGICAL Voice ,never forgotten DIMITRY

  • Bruce says:

    How tragic. You always hope that the next treatment is going to work, that the doctors are wrong this time, that there will be a “miracle” and the tumor will disappear for some unknown reason…

    Never had a chance to see him live, but he was one of those artists where just knowing he is out there in the world making great music makes life better.

  • Marcela Brandstatter says:

    Very sad news. RIP Dima. Great talent, gone to soon. My Condolences to Dimitri family.

  • Patrons of the Muskoka Opera Guild says:

    So sad to hear of this great baritone’s passing …..from his many fans in Canada….we are so thankful to his recorded performances……he will always be a welcome voice that will forever live in our hearts!

  • Linda McDougall says:

    When he was here in Guanajuato during the Cervantino Festival some years ago, we all fell deeply in love with him and his golden voice…I’ll never forget the moment when he stepped forward for the last of five encores, ripped open his Russian jacket, and burst into “Dark Eyes”…I’m not sure of the name exactly – but everyone burst into tears in the huge theatre. What an enchanting voice and a lovely man – I don’t care what any critic may have said – he was one of a kind, and have never missed any of his operas for many years. May his most beautiful family be comforted in knowing he’ll never be forgotten.

    • Furzwängler says:

      A lovely heartfelt tribute from you.

      I think one of the things I shall remember him the most for is that wonderful CD of Russian War Time Songs he recorded. Just stunning…

  • Rob says:

    I saw him walking out of Parsons Green tube station in 2002!

  • John Borstlap says:

    Heartbreaking news. He was one of the greatest singers ever. Fortunatey there are many recordings, and his passing so young makes sure that he will be present in music life as eternally young and vigorous.

  • Pietro Antoni says:

    With great and profound love for all the joy you have given me. R.I.P.

  • Paul Roncetti says:

    Tremendous and irreplaceable loss