Opera Canada described Bernard Turgeon as one of Canada’s true musical legends. Known for his rich characterizations and his ability to convey deep emotion, his performances have been described variously as glowing and opulant, splendidly rich, remarkably nuanced and subtle, truly comic, delitful ,and thrilling. He was born in Edmonton,Alberta and in the course of his career as a baritone, performed operatic roles throughout Canada, the United States, Great Britain, Europe, and the former USSR. During his three tours of the USSR, he performed at the Bolshoi and was made an honorary member of the State Opera of Moscow, of Novosibirsk, Riga, and Odessa. Turgeon performed at the Stratford Festival in Canada, and in Britain at the Royal Shakespeare Festival and at the Edinburgh and Glyndebourne Festivals, as well as for BBC Television. He has recorded for EMI, RCA, and CBC records.
Turgeon has sung in command performances for the British Royal Family, the Prime Minister of Canada, the President of the United States and the President of Mexico. He was the first Canadian to be permanently engaged as Principal Baritone with London’s famed Sadler’s Wells Opera, today’s English National Opera. In recognition of his artistic contribution to Great Britain, Turgeon was instated at London’s Museum of the Performing Arts. Articles on his career are included in The International Who’s Who and Le Dictionnaire de l’Amérique Francaise.
Turgeon created the title role in Harry Somers’, Louis Riel, commissioned for the Canadian Centennial and premiered by the Canadian Opera Company in 1967. He sang the role again when the CBC televised Louis Riel in 1969 and he recreated this famous operatic portrayal when the opera was presented at Washington’s Kennedy Centre as part of the American Bicentennial Celebrations.
Turgeon is recognized as a teacher and administrator of considerable scope and success. He has developed voice and opera programs at the Banff School of Fine Arts (1970), the University of Alberta (1969), the University of Victoria (1978) and at McGill University, Montreal (1989). As well, he has taught singing and has given Master Classes in Great Britain, Austria and the former USSR. Mr.Turgeon's voice students have appeared with the major opera companies, festivals and orchestras across Canada, the United States, South America, Europe and China.
Retirement from McGill University in 2000 gave him the opportunity to expand the scope of his lectures, performance workshops and teaching seminars in Canada and the United States. In addition, Turgeon accepted an invitation from the Faculty of Music at McGill to remain and inaugurate his innovative and successful graduate-level performance seminar The Power of the Unconscious and the Process of Learning and "Music and the Mind".
Bernard Turgeon has been a developer, trainer, and consultant in the field of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) since 1997 when he introduced NLP at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He consults primarily in modelling performance excellence. He has consulted for professional artists, athletes, students and choral organizations. Bernard is recognized nationally as the foremost developer, trainer, consultant, and practitioner of NLP in the field of Education, Performing Arts, and Sports.
He has worked with a variety of professional artists and athletes and works extensively with choral organizations.
Mr. Turgeon was Vice-President of the 'Vancouver Island Metis Society'.
Bernard and his wife Teresa (Master Operatic Coach), presently resides in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada and co-founder of "STAR HILL FARM", where we cultivate sustainable produce such as, 'ASPARAGUS'.
Copyright 2007 Bernard Turgeon