Ferrier, Kathleen, 1912–53, British contralto, b. Higher Walton, Lancashire. Ferrier began voice lessons at 25. She became known for her rich, expressive, and remarkably low voice. Her celebrated performances include the title role in the premiere of Benjamin Britten's Rape of Lucretia (1946). Ferrier's interpretations of Gluck's Orfeo, the angel in Elgar's Dream of Gerontius, and works of Mahler and Brahms were greatly acclaimed.