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 George Henry Hubert Lascelles

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George Henry Hubert Lascelles

  • Birth 7 Feb 1923 London, City of London, Greater London, England
  • Death 11 Jul 2011 Leeds, Metropolitan Borough of Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
  • Burial Harewood, Metropolitan Borough of Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
  • Memorial ID 73248669

Opera Impresario, Author. 7th Earl of Harewood. Though a member of the British Royal Family, he chose to make his own way in the world of music. The child of wealth and noble position he was born sixth in line to the British throne; as a young man he took part in the ceremonial activities demanded by his station including the funeral of his grandfather George V, whom he grew to resemble, and the coronation of his uncle George VI. Educated at Ludgrove, Eton, and King's College, Cambridge, he was commissioned in the Grenadier Guards in 1942, wounded in 1944 fighting in Italy, taken prisoner-of-war by the Germans, and held in a facility for high ranking officers until 1945. He became the Seventh Earl of Harewood upon his father's death in 1947 and was to spend the rest of his life facing the difficulties and expenses of maintaining a vast estate, on several occasions having to sell off land and valuable artifacts; the year 1947 also saw his first service as Counsellor of State, a position requiring him to exercise the official duties of the Monarch. Having had an interest in opera since childhood he had taken advantage of his time in German captivity to read almost the entirity of "Grove's Dictionary of Music"; in 1950 he founded the magazine "Opera" and served as its editor until 1952 while in 1951 he began the first of two three year stints on the staff of Covent Garden, the second coming from 1969 to 1972. In 1954 a negative review he had written of an article in "Kobbe's Complete Opera Book" led to his being named editor of the venerable publication, a job he held for 30 years, and to his eventual authorship of "Kobbe's Illustrated Opera Book". For a time he was unwelcome at Court due to his 1967 divorce from pianist Marion Stein and remarriage to violinist Patricia Tuckwell (which took place in America for political reasons), though he subsequently returned to the good graces of his cousin the Queen. In 1972 the Earl was named managing director of Sadler's Wells Opera, a position he occupied until 1985, in the process overseeing the 1974 name change to English National Opera (ENO) and the development of the ensemble into a first rate opera company and an effective rival to the Royal Opera, Covent Garden. During his time he earned praise for several innovative productions, particularly a complete presentation of Wagner's "Ring Cycle" and a Mafia-themed version of Verdi's "Rigoletto". He served as chairman of the board of ENO from 1986 to 1995, and from 1985 until 1996 headed the British Board of Film Classification where he cracked-down on what he considered excessive filth and violence in movies. At various times over the years he also had charge of the music festivals of Edinburgh, Leeds, and Adelaide, Australia. The Earl took a seat in the House of Lords in 1956, was named Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) in 1986, and in 2010 was designated honourary Member of the Order of Australia (AM). At his death he was 46th. in line of succession to the throne of England.

Bio by: Bob Hufford

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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bob Hufford
  • Added: 12 Jul 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 73248669
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for George Henry Hubert Lascelles (7 Feb 1923–11 Jul 2011), Find A Grave Memorial no. 73248669, citing All Saints Churchyard, Harewood, Metropolitan Borough of Leeds, West Yorkshire, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave .