OP0341. DER ROSENKAVALIER (in English), Live Performance, 1971, Kingís Theatre, Glasgow, w.Gibson Cond. Scottish Opera; Janet Baker, Helga Dernesch, Elizabeth Harwood, Noel Mangin, Thomas Hemsley, etc.; ARIADNE AUF NAXOS (in English), Live Performance, 1977, Theatre Royal, Glasgow, w.Norman del Mar Cond. Scottish Chamber Orch., w.Janet Baker, Helga Dernesch, Nan Christie, etc.; Janet Baker, w.Graham Johnson (Pf.): Frauenliebe und Leben (Schumann), Live Performance, 7 Oct., 1979. (Czech Republic) 4-Ponto 1039. Very long out-of-print, Final Sealed Copy! - 8717202250394
"Following the end of her performing career, Janet Baker has taken up a number of positions, most notably as a long-standing chancellor of the University of York and a patron of the Leeds piano competition. But she says that her work as a singer in a way prepared her for retirement. In a 1967 interview she revealed that she was reading Jung. 'The stuff of performing has to be very much an interior journey', she says now. 'You have to understand an awful lot of what is going on inside yourself. My interest in what makes a human being function was applied to roles, but has also been part of something that helps me in my retirement.
You get absorbed by a job, you retire from it, and then, if you're lucky, there is this period of preparing to die if you like, a very interesting stage of life in itself. People say how lucky you are to have a gift, although what you do with that gift it has nothing to do with luck. But the really great thing is that it clarifies your life. Most people have to experiment with lots of different things with greater or lesser levels of satisfaction. So it has been a huge simplification of life to know that you are on the right path as both a performer and now as a retired performer. I've always trusted that there is a purpose to my life.
Opera made up about a third of my life and so did recording, but I couldn't have lived without the concert repertoire as well'. She explains that there is 'one less layer' between the singer and audience in a recital. 'You are responsible for everything. You are the guide and whether the audience follows is solely down to you. The music emerges from a place in your gut that is completely your idea of how to serve the composer and the poet so there is no hiding place. You hold something very precious in your hands for two hours and God help you if you drop it'."
- Nicholas Wroe, THE GUARDIAN, 13 July, 2012
"You canít expect anyone else to help you get through life, but if you have a relationship with God which gives you an absolute bedrock then youíre given a tremendous strength which no other human being could give you.
Everything that I learnt during my working days in order to set foot on a platform and open myself to other people, all that discovery through my job has made possible the last half of my life. Without that career and all the blessings of it, I donít think Iíd be able to cope with not being able to do it anymore, (a terrible bereavement in itself) or with the lessons of recent years. I feel so lucky to have had this gift in my life which has permeated everything that I am. I come to the end of my life feeling resting in a sort of gratitude that Iíve done what I think I was born to. I like to think Iíve done my best for my composers and librettists."
- Janet Baker
ďDonít confuse your God-given talent with your self. Talent is something youíre entrusted with: respect it. And donít believe your own publicity!Ē
- Janet Baker in interview with Rupert Christiansen, THE TELEGRAPH, 5 Oct., 2011