Opera world mourns international soprano, 44

Opera world mourns international soprano, 44


norman lebrecht

October 11, 2020

The Canadian soprano Erin Wall has died after three years of breast cancer. She leaves a young family and friends the world over.

A finalist at the 2003 Cardiff Singer of the World competition, Erin was snapped up by Chicago’s Lyric Opera for leading roles, including Marguerite in Faust (2003); Donna Anna in Don Giovanni (2004), Freia in Das Rheingold (2004) and much else. She made her Met debut as Donna Anna in 2009. She also commanded roles at La Scala and in Munch, Vienna and Paris.

Last November she recorded Ellen Orford in Bergen’s Peter Grimes, which has just been released on Chandos. In January this year, she shone in Mahler’s 8th symphony in Birmingham.

Colleagues write:


Official announcement:

Erin Marie Wall
November 4, 1975
October 8, 2020Erin Marie Wall passed away peacefully on Thursday, October 8 from complications due to metastatic breast cancer.  She is survived by her husband, Roberto Mauro, children Michael and Julia Mauro, sister Shannon Wall, parents Michael and Suzanne Wall and many family and friends.  Born in Calgary, Alberta, Erin grew up in Vancouver, BC. She studied piano at the Vancouver Academy of Music and attended Pt. Grey and Sutherland High Schools graduating in 1993.  She pursued a singing career at Western Washington University, Aspen Summer Music Festival 1998, Rice University, Music Academy of the West 2000 and the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Ryan Opera Center.

Erin developed into an extraordinary lyric soprano with an international career, who performed with most of the world’s great symphony orchestras and opera companies.  She was a Grammy Award winning artist and can be heard and seen on many CDs and DVDs.  Besides her amazing professional career, Erin loved her home and family, often wishing that she could be home more. In addition she was an avid long distance runner having completed a New York Marathon and 2 Chicago Marathons. Erin was a bright light with an amazing gift and a huge heart. Just as her soul and special gift allowed her to lift the spirits of those she touched, may her spirit shine over all who knew her and forever keep her close to our hearts. The family would like to extend their thanks and gratitude to the amazing medical teams at Princess Margaret and Credit Valley Hospitals.

Throughout her career, Erin was profoundly grateful for the mentorship opportunities she received as an artist and was committed to paying those experiences forward by nurturing the next generation of voices and musicians. To carry on this legacy, her family is establishing the Erin Wall Tribute Fund at the Canadian Opera Company. In lieu of flowers, friends and family are asked to make a donation to the COC to provide vital support to the future of opera and in memory of Erin’s life through this fund.


  • Emil says:

    A tragic loss. She was the soprano in Beethoven’s Ninth at Montréal’s Maison Symphonique opening in 2011 with OSM. A fine concert, and a fine CD.

    Just a precision, concerning the opening sentence of your article: Erin Wall’s Twitter bio states “Please don’t use the word “battle” to refer to my life or illness.”

  • John Borstlap says:

    What a terribly sad story. And what a beautiful rendering of that Handel aria, entirely authentic singing, from the heart.

    Why can humanity go to Mars where there is nothing but desert, and not conquer this disease?

  • Derek says:

    Such very sad news. Sympathy to all her family and loved ones at this difficult time.

    She was a lovely singer and performer. R.I.P. Erin.

  • Robert Roy says:

    I was lucky enough to meet her when she sang in Edinburgh a few years ago. A truly lovely lady.

    RIP, Miss Wall.


    Rest in Peace – ERIN WALL 🙁

  • Doc Martin says:

    In Memoriam

    Do good by stealth and blush to find it fame.
    Alexander Pope

    He who binds to himself a joy
    Does the winged life destroy;
    But he who kisses the joy as it flies
    Lives in eternity’s sun rise.
    William Blake

    Johannes Brahms
    Vier ernste Gesänge op. 121
    Kathleen Ferrier
    John Newmark, piano


  • Bruce says:

    How sad. How awful.

  • katrina jackson says:

    She was truly gifted by the Lord with her voice!

  • Peter San Diego says:

    Such a tragic loss. She simply lit up the stage with her voice, musicality and presence in the too few times I heard her. Heartfelt condolences to her family.

  • concerned bystander says:

    I had never heard of your name before reading your comment but by anybody’s reckoning, a tasteless, insensitive and crass posting from a troll never to have graced a stage. Get some help soon, best regards, no disrespect intended

  • Clarrieu says:

    Hey, McSomething, why didn’t you stay in bed this morning, instead of inflicting your miserable negativity upon the suffering world?

  • John Humphreys says:

    An entirely unnecessary observation, as I think you know.

  • Doc Martin says:

    Art thou troubled?
    Music will calm thee.
    Art thou weary?
    Rest shall be thine.
    Music, source of all gladness,
    Heals thy sadness,
    At her shrine.
    Music, music, ever divine!
    Music, music calleth with voice divine.

    When the welcome spring is smiling,
    O’er the Earth with flow’rs beguiling
    After Winter’s dreary reign.
    Sweetest music doth attend her.
    Heav’nly harmonies doth lend her
    Chanting praises in her train,
    Chanting praises in her train.


    Kathleen Ferrier,
    London Symphony Orchestra
    Sir Malcolm Sargent

  • Sam says:

    Please remove, Norman.

  • Linda Ysanne says:

    What an inappropriate place to make such a comment.

  • Siegfried says:

    This comment is a disgrace and says an awful lot about the person who wrote it. I feel privileged to have heard Erin Wall in concert and am all the better for it.

  • V. Lind says:

    How terribly sad. I had seen her in concert number of times — Beethoven’s 9th and a Mahler 8, among other things. When I read of her cancer a year or two ago I assumed she would come through given her age. This was a real shock, and she is a true loss. Condolences to her loved ones, and RIP to a lovely artist.

  • Doug says:

    My condolences to Michael, her father, and the rest of the family.

  • Jeffrey Beineman says:

    I had the honor of seeing her in Phila. Pa. in Mahler 8. I felt honoured to hear her sing. May she rest in peace for all eternity.

  • mhtetzel says:

    My memory of Erin Wall. Sunday 12th May 2019 Konzerthaus in Vienna. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsgDxiSpckM

  • Heidi Jones says:

    May light perpetual shine upon you always beautiful Erin.

  • Cynical Bystander says:

    In very sad circumstances it is at least heartening that several comments have been posted in reply to the heartless post which has rightly been taken down. Ms Wall is an artist taken before her time and she deserves to be be remembered for the pleasure she brought to many thousands in the opera house and concert hall. As to the insensitive comment no longer polluting this thread, may the poster reflect on her insensitivity and ask why what she wrote was anything other than totally inappropriate, to put it mildly.

  • Edmundo Duran says:

    So sad for tha she was wonderful singer 6

  • papageno says:

    I’ve never heard of her.. RIP.
    The most shocking operatic death for me was Tatiana Troyanos. I had just seen her Clairon in San Francisco’s “Capriccio”!

  • Duncan Smith says:

    She was a delight to listen to, to watch, and to enjoy. My wishes for her family are that their mother, kids, husband, and daughter, and friends remember how great the joy she gave the world with that wonderful voice. We are all of us made better for her presence in our midst. Take care of those children she brought into this same world

  • Jonathan Taylor says:

    Erin we never knew you but we knew your voice, unforgettable in Beethoven 9 at the Proms. We also knew your Mum and Dad, to whom we send our love.
    Jonathan and Sue
    Calgary Philharmonic
    1971 – 1973

  • Patricia Lasagne says:

    Rest in everlasting peace