Origin: Winnipeg, Manitoba, 🇨🇦
Edward (Daniel) Evanko. Tenor, actor, b Winnipeg 19 Oct 1941. He won the first of many trophies in the Manitoba (Winnipeg) Music Competition Festival at 13. He studied with Herbert Belyea and Lucien Needham and sang professionally for the first time at Rainbow Stage. He graduated from the University of Manitoba in English, then studied singing and acting at The Old Vic Theatre School in Bristol. In England he studied singing with Nell Moody and for three years was a member of the BBC Singers in London.
After performing in Gilbert & Sullivan productions (1960, 1961) at the Stratford Festival, and at Her Majesty's Theatre in London, he toured in the English Opera Company's production of Dido and Aeneas, sang in the British and European premieres of Benjamin Britten's Curlew River, and sang in Rossini's William Tell for the Welsh National Opera.
After six years abroad, he returned to Canada to appear regularly on television and in 1967 became the star of his own weekly CBC TV program, the Ed Evanko Show, andin 1968 starred in Norman Campbell's productions of Thirteen Clocks and Mavor Moore'sBest of all Possible Worlds.
Evanko received the Theatre World Award in 1969 for his New York debut in a leading role in Canterbury Tales, which launched a Broadway career that has spanned two decades and included leading roles in Sondheim's A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum, A Little Night Music, Follies, and Sweeney Todd; Knickerbocker Holiday; Rex; and Peter Brooks' La Tragédie de Carmen, among many others.
His roles in regional opera companies in North America have included Florestan, Don José, Tamino, and Cavaradossi. His performance in Leonard Bernstein's Candide was a highlight of his three seasons with the Stratford Festival. In the 1980s he sang in many oratorio performances, including Haydn's The Creation with the Bach-Elgar Choir of Hamilton, Ont.
Throughout his career Evanko has continued to represent his Ukrainian heritage in Canada and the USA. His recitals of Ukrainian music with bandurist Peter Kosyk have received acclaim. He has appeared as guest soloist with Edmonton's Cheremosh Dance Ensemble, the Rusalka Dancers, and the Koshetz Choir of Winnipeg, in the Manitoba Theatre Centre's production of Tsymbaly, and at most of the major Ukrainian festivals in North America.
Evanko's recordings include cast albums for Rex (1976, RCA ABL1-1683) and Canterbury Tales (1969, Capitol SW-229), two albums of Ukrainian songs and arias and two solo albums of popular music, Ed Evanko (ca 1971, Decca DL-75238) and My Native Land (1983, Destiny BEL-83-2).
Edward Danylo Evanko (October 19, 1938 – November 18, 2018) was a Canadian actor and singer who became a Ukrainian Catholic priest. He was born and died in Winnipeg.
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Evanko was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, to Danylo Evanko and Justyna Dmytryk, who had emigrated from Western Ukraine. At an early age, he showed a special talent for music, winning the first of many trophies in the Manitoba (Winnipeg) Music Competition Festival at thirteen years of age. He studied with Herbert Belyea and Lucien Needham and sang professionally for the first time at Rainbow Stage. He earned a BA Degree at the University of Manitoba, majoring in English.
In 1961, he began training at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School and sang with two opera companies in the 1970s - the English Opera Group and the Welsh National Opera. Upon his return to Winnipeg in 1967, he hosted his own “Ed Evanko Show.” He appeared in many evening and daytime television drama including Ryan's Hope, Chicago Hope, and 3rd Rock from the Sun. He appeared on Broadway in Canterbury Tales and Rex.
Education and career
He earned a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Manitoba, where he was Marc Antony in "Julius Caesar" among other productions, appeared at Rainbow Stage, and on CBC Television and CBC Radio. His Broadway debut gained him a Theatre World Award, a New Jersey Drama Critics Award and a Los Angeles Ovation Award nomination. He recorded Broadway albums for Capitol, RCA, an album for Decca, and three for Destiny Records. He appeared at all the major Ukrainian festivals in Canada and the USA, and promoted Ukrainian music by singing on many occasions at the Ukrainian Institute and at Lincoln Center in New York City. He was also a member of the Stratford Festival company for three seasons in the early 1960s and late 1970s.
He did his academic and spiritual formation at the Pontificio Collegio Beda in Rome, at St. Josaphat Ukrainian Catholic Seminary and at The Catholic University of America (both in Washington D.C., and at Holy Spirit Ukrainian Catholic Seminary and St. Paul University in Ottawa. He completed his Master of Arts in Theology degree (Eastern Christian Studies concentration) in the spring of 2005, and began to serve in the Archeparchy of Winnipeg. He entered the priesthood in his sixties and was practicing as a travelling priest in rural Manitoba. He then moved out to the West Coast for a brief spell, before returning to Manitoba.
On October 21, 2016 he suffered a stroke to which he succumbed on November 18, 2018.