Born in Kent, Henry Waddington studied at the Royal Northern College of Music with Barbara Robotham, and he made his operatic debut there as Bottom in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a role he reprised for Opera North in the 2013/14 season.
He joined Glyndebourne Touring Opera in 1992, singing the role of The Madhouse Keeper in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress, a role he repeated with Glyndebourne Festival in 1994. Other roles for Glyndebourne have included Stage Hand/ The Makropoulos Case, Antonio/The Marriage of Figaro, Graf Lamoral /Arabella, Major Domo and La Roche (cover)/Capriccio, Quince /A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Valens/Theodora, Don Fernando/Fidelio, Christus / Bach St Matthew Passion and the title role in Saul/Handel . For Glyndebourne on Tour he has sung Colline/La Bohème, Publio/La Clemenza di Tito, Valens, Don Magnifico/Cenerentola and Don Alfonso/Così fan tutte. He now works regularly with all of the UK opera companies including Fiorello/Il barbiere di Siviglia, Sacristan/Tosca, Zuniga/Carmen, and Spinellocchio /Gianni Schicci for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Colline, Sacristan, Police Commissar/Der Rosenkavalier, First Workman/ Wozzeck, Geronimo/The Secret Marriage, Cyrus/Croesus (by Keiser), Bartolo / Le nozze di Figaro and Frère Laurent/Roméo et Juliette for Opera North, Count Horn/Un ballo in maschera, Don Basilio/Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Bartolo/Le nozze di Figaro and First Nazarene/Salome for Welsh National Opera and Man at window, Old man, Youth, Beggar all in Martinu’s Julietta, Jupiter/Castor and Pollux, Sacristan / Tosca and Lt. Ratcliffe/Billy Budd for English National Opera. For Grange Park Opera he has sung Leporello/Don Giovanni and for Garsington Opera Buralicchio in L’equivoco stravagante by Rossini and Don Magnifico. Other roles include Banquo/Macbeth, Tutor/Le Comte Ory, Kichiga/Tchaikovsky’s The Enchantress, Farlaf/Glinka’s Russlan and Ludmilla, and Haly/L’Italiana in Algeri. He made his debut at La Monnaie in Brussels singing Soligni/Three Sisters (by Peter Eotvos) and has returned to sing Plutone/Orfeo, Brander/La damnation de Faust, Dieu infernale and Oracle in Alceste, and Quince. He has also sung Quince for the Liceu in Barcelona and the Teatro Real in Madrid. For Netherlands Opera he has sung Lt. Ratcliffe.
Recent and future operatic engagements include Bartolo/Figaro and Zuniga /Carmen for Welsh National Opera, Stárek, / Jenufa for Netherlands Opera, Pallante for the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, Pastor Oberlin/Jakob Lenz for Staatstheater Stuttgart, La Monnaie and for the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Kothner / Die Meistersinger for Glyndebourne, Publio/La clemenza di Tito, Lodovico/Otello, Bottom/A Midsummer Night’s Dream , Bartolo, Don Magnifico and Baron Ochs / Der Rosenkavalier for Opera North, Swallow/Peter Grimes for Aldeburgh Festival, Falstaff (title role) and Pastor/Badger / Cunning Little Vixen for Garsington Opera, Gobrias / Belshazzar for The Grange Festival, Baron Ochs for the Norwegian National Opera, Quince for the Aix en Provence Festival and the Opera de Rouen.
Henry Waddington’s concert performances of operas have included Vaughan Williams’ Sir John in Love with British Youth Opera, Keeper of the Madhouse/The Rake’s Progress with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Andrew Davis at the Royal Festival Hall, Callestene/Poliuto and Oroe/Semiramide for the Chelsea Opera Group in London as well as Wozzeck with the Philharmonia Orchestra under Esa Pekka Salonen in Europe and the US.
Concert performances include the Mozart Mass in C for the Salzburg Festival and Ivor Bolton, Brander/La damnation de Faust for the Philharmonia under Charles Dutoit, Puccini Messe di Gloria and Berlioz L’Enfance du Christ with BBC National Orchestra of Wales, a tour of Handel’s Solomon with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment under René Jacobs including concerts in London, Paris and New York, and Handel Israel in Egypt with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Emmanuelle Haïm at the 2008 Edinburgh International Festival. He has performed Kurt Weill’s The Firebrand of Florence with the BBC Symphony Orchestra under Sir Andrew Davis, as well as a concert and recording of Getty’s Plump Jack at St John’s Smith Square. He has sung Handel Messiah with the Philharmonia, the English Concert under Harry Bicket and the Huddersfield Choral Society, Haydn’s Seven Last Words for the Edinburgh Festival and Haydn Arias at the Wigmore Hall with the Classical Opera Company.
Future and recent concert engagements include Berlioz L’Enfance du Christ with BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Bach St Matthew Passion with Aberdeen Bach Choir, Tippett’s A Child of Our Time with Cambridge University Music Society and the Orchestre National Pays de Loire, Rossini Petite Messe Solonelle with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, Handel’s Messiah with the Hallé, Huddersfield Choral Society, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Ulster Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Orquesta da Euskadi, The Sixteen, the King’s Consort, Orquesta Sinfonica Castilla y Leon, Handel and Haydn Society and the Cleveland Orchestra, The Creation with the Huddersfield Choral Society and Fauré Requiem at Wells Cathedral.