Apr 24, 2014

By Michael Kramer

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Renowned opera singer Ben Heppner is stepping away from the world stage.

The famous dramatic tenor announced the news this morning.

Heppner is known for his signature “Tristan” as well as other roles in Wagner’s challenging operas, along with Verdi’s “Otello.”

The singer says “After much consideration, I’ve decided the time has come for a new era in my life. I’m setting aside my career as an opera and concert singer – and making a transition to new things.”

Heppner is counted among the world’s top tenors but the British Columbia-born, Toronto-based singer has sometimes suffered from vocal strain that affected his performances or forced him to cancel engagements.

The 58 year old studied music at the University of British Columbia and shot to fame as winner of the CBC Talent Festival in 1979.

Heppner earned both Grammy and Juno Awards and, in 2010, was invested as a Companion of the Order of Canada — the honour’s highest level.

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