American opera singer Richard T. Gill has died, aged 82. He passed away in Providence, Rhode Island on Monday, October 25 after suffering heart failure.
Gill, an economist and longtime faculty member at America's esteemed Harvard University, quit his tenured job after discovering his voice through formal vocal training, which he began as an anti-smoking regimen at age 40.
He went on to perform featured roles with the New York City Opera in the early 1970s after a few years of study and later joined the Met, where he sang alongside opera greats including Placido Domingo, Beverly Sills, Kiri Te Kanawa and Shirley Verrett, between 1973 and 1976.
Gill's roles included Panthus in "Les Troyens", Frere Laurent in Gounod's "Romeo et Juliette", the Commendatore in Mozart's "Don Giovanni" and the King in Verdi's "Aida". He retired from opera in the mid-1980s, and went on to publish several academic books, including "Our Changing Population", "Posterity Lost: Progress, Ideology", and "The Decline of the American Family".
Gill is survived by his wife, Elizabeth Bjornson, a sister, three sons, and eight grandchildren.