He studied conducting and singing at Universities in Peoria and Urbana,
and with Tommy Lo Monaco. While still a student, he made his debut as Ferrando
at the Lake Georgia Opera Festival. In 1979, Beverly Sills hired him for her New York City Opera (debut role: Arturo in
Lucia). He stayed for several years and sang a host of roles there, including Almaviva, Nadir, Alfredo, Duca, Rodolfo or
Massenet's des Grieux. Guest appearances at many smaller US and Canadian opera theaters.
In 1982, he made his European debut at the Vienna Staatsoper as Nemorino; he sang in Munich, Glyndebourne, at Covent Garden,
the Deutsche Oper Berlin, in Hamburg and Rome, and returned a few times to the Vienna Staatsoper. In 1987, he made his Met
debut (122 performances until 2002; debut as des Grieux, principal roles: Tamino, Ottavio, Ferrando, Lenskij, Duca, Alfredo,
Nemorino, Edgardo, Tom Rakewell). Chicago, San Francisco, the Salzburg, Edinburgh and Aix-en-Provence festivals, Lyon,
Zürich, San Diego, Dallas were places that he visited (most of them repeatedly), Covent Garden became one of
the centers of his activity.
Having suffered from severe depression for many years in spite of all successes, he shot himself at his home.
François Nouvion always quoted Hadley as one of the singers ruined by Tommy Lo Monaco and the Stanley method that he
taught; I didn't and don't agree. The few times I had the chance to hear Hadley live, I always thought that he was clearly
above the average of the singers of his generation, and quite enjoyed his performances.
Reference 1: Kutsch & Riemens, reference 2: Metropolitan Opera archives, reference 3