who appeared on Broadway in a string of musicals in the 1960s, like Ben Franklin in Paris, Golden Boy, and Mame.
In the late
‘60s, she embarked on a career as a session singer on albums such as
Quincy Jones’ 1969 release, Walking
in Space. She appeared on a
pair of Bob Dylan albums in 1970, New
Morning and Self Portrait. In 1972, she performed on Grover
Washington, Jr.’s Inner City Blues and Bernard “Pretty” Purdie’s Soul
is… Pretty Purdie. She reunited with Bob Dylan on his
self-titled Dylan in 1973, a year
that saw her team up with Gregg Allman on Laid Back, and return to the stage
for the New York revival of Four
Saints in Three Acts.
Luther Allison employed her services for his 1975 album, Night Life. In 1976, she appeared on
Blondie’s and the Rice & Beans Orchestra’s self-titled
albums, Maynard Ferguson’s Primal
Scream, and Idris Muhammad’s House of the Rising Sun. Hilda hooked up with LaSo for
their self-titled album in 1977.
March 1977, she was featured on WGBH’s Basic Black, performing “Seguedilla” from George Bizet’s Carmen.
on which she appeared in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s include Charme’s Let
it In, Grover Washington, Jr.’s Winelight,
and The Story of Jimi
Hendrix. In March 1983, she
gave a recital at Alice Tully Hall in New York, performing works of Nin,
Purcell, Rossini, and Wolf.
recordings seem to have tapered off, it is no accident: Hilda’s biggest claim to fame
is her work on the opera stage, particularly with the Metropolitan Opera in
New York, performing “pants” or “trousers” roles
such as Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro, Hansel in Hansel and Gretel, and Sesto in Julius Caesar.
In 1991, she
joined the faculty of the Manhattan School of Music and Howard University,
where she taught voice until 1994.
In the CD era,
opportunities to hear Hilda in all of her digital glory abound on albums
such as Donizetti: Anna Bolena,
William Grant Still: Witness, Volume 2, and Q:
The Musical Biography of Quincy Jones.
teaches at Sarah Lawrence College
and gives private lessons at her studio in New York.
Frank Sinatra recordings
That's What God Looks Like To Me (Stan Irvin/Lan
49233 (XNY2101S) (US 45)
Theme from "New York, New York" (Fred Ebb/John Kander)
RPS49233 (XNY 2103 S) (US 45)