30 March 1904 Sosnowiec – 11 June 1998 Fort Lauderdale
He was the younger brother of Jan Kiepura. They were born in Silesia, the German part of
Poland, and participated in the Silesian Uprisings after World War I that aimed at associating Silesia with the newly founded Polish
state; Władysław was severely wounded in 1919, and took part in the second uprising in 1920 nontheless (just like Jan
and their father).
Like his brother Jan, he studied voice with Tadeusz Leliwa in Warsaw, then he went to Milano
for further studies. So as to avoid being mixed up with Jan, he called himself Władysław Ladis (Ladis was in fact his
nickname, short for Władysław).
He made his debut as Gounod's Faust in 1932 in Warsaw, where he stayed until 1934; then he was at the Hamburg opera theater for four
years. In 1937, he was Jontek in a film version of Halka. In 1938/39, he sang at La Scala (debut role: Rodolfo).
When WWII broke out, he emigrated to the USA like his brother (both of them were staunch antifascists). He continued to sing for a
while for the Polish community (in Halka and Straszny dwór at the Civic Opera Chicago, for instance), but wasn't
successful. He quit the stage in the mid-1940s and dealt in real estate in Florida.
Reference 1, reference 2
Odeon, Berlin, about March 1936
Be11277 Halka (Moniuszko): I ty mu wierzysz O-25678
Be11278 Halka (Moniuszko): Szumią jodły O-25678
Be11291 Tu, ca nun chiagne (de Curtis) O-25737, Parlophon R2227
Be11292 Lolita (Buzzi-Peccia) O-25737, Parlophon R2227
Odeon, Berlin, about October 1937
Be11856 Majarska (Schulenburg) O-25957
Be11856-2 Majarska (Schulenburg) O-25957
Be11857 Sing mir das Lied noch einmal (Strecker) O-25957
Be11857-2 Sing mir das Lied noch einmal (Strecker) O-25957
Odeon, Berlin, April 1938
Be12021 Manon (Massenet): Ich schloss die Augen O-26127
Be12022 Manon (Massenet): Flieh, o flieh O-26127
Harmonia Records, New York City, about 1942
H-1B Najpiękniejsze kujawiaki (arr. Dana-Danilowski) H-1001A
H-3BX Pięć mazurów (arr. Dana-Danilowski) H-1001B
Source for the discography: Gesellschaft für historische Tonträger, Wien
I wish to thank Thomas Silverbörg for the recordings and picture.
Anton Bieber has contributed the Kujawiak medley (with label scan): thank you!