Born: June 6, 1913 - Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, Canada
Died: May 1, 1979 - Belmont, North Carolina, USA
The Canasdian tenor anmd teacher, Joseph (Victor) Laderoute (Ladéroute), was born of French-Canadian parents. He sang as a child in the parish choir and at seven began studying singing with Mrs S.L. Pieke. Three years later he entered the Paulists' Seminary in New York and toured in the USA 1927-198 as soloist with the Paulist Choristers. He continued his voice training in New York with Léon Rothier. He studied c1942 with Salvator Issaurel in Montreal.
In 1938, Joseph Laderoute was soloist with the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir in Berlioz' Requiem. He was a soloist with the Dessoff Choirs in New York in 1940 and gave a recital at the Ladies' Morning Musical Club in Montreal the same year. Within a few years he obtained for himself a leading position in oratorio, concert, opera and radio. His vast repertoire, his splendid appearance and a voice which was recognized as one of the finest lyric tenor voices of his time, secured him an important and ever increasing role in the American musical scene. He appeared with the orchestras of Chicago Symphony Orchestra (1939-1940), Detroit Symphony Orchestra (Felix Mendelssohn's Elijah) in 1940, and Toronto Symphony Orchestra in 1940, and sang again with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra in the Canadian premiere of Gustav Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde in 1945. He was Jacquino in the 1944 NBC Symphony Orchestra broadcast of L.v. Beethoven's Fidelio under Arturo Toscanini; the performance was released later as a recording (RCA Victor 2-LP). At the Berkshire Music Center in Tanglewood, Massachusetts, he appeared in the title roles of the USA premieres of two major operas: Benjamin Brittens Peter Grimes in 1946, and W.A. Mozart's Idomeneo in 1947.
With the Opera Guild of Montreal Joseph Laderoute sang the Astrologer in Le Coq d'or (1944), Florestan in Fidelio (1946), and Manrico in Il Trovatore (1949). Thomas Archer described him in The Gazette on May 4, 1946 as 'possibly the best choice that could have been made on this continent for the role of Florestan. [His portrayal was] a striking creation in many respects'. In 1948 he sang the title role in Charles Gounod's Faust at the Mount Royal Chalet for the Montreal Festivals. He was a soloist at the Bethlehem Bach Festival, Pennsylvania, and Cincinnati Bach Festival, and sang five roles in the North American premiere (1948) of Arthur Honegger's Jeanne d'Arc au bûcher with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. He gave many recitals in Town Hall, New York, and on the NBC, CBS, and MBS networks, as well as on the CBC.
Joseph Laderoute was director of vocal studies 1952-1954 at the Jordan College of Music of Butler University, Indianapolis, and later taught at the Kansas City Conservatory and the Peabody Conservatory, Baltimore. He eventually abandoned his musical career to become an Oblate at the Benedictine monastery in Belmont, North Carolina.