"Greek mythology tells us that Apollo set out from the island of Delos every morning with his lyre in hand, bringing light, music and healing to the world. We at Delos International share the awareness that our world needs the balm of music." Amelia S. Haygood, President and founder
It is impossible to describe our label without talking about Amelia.
Amelia S. Haygood (1919-2007) was one of the most respected names in the classical recording industry. Founder and President of Delos, Amelia was a leader in the industry for much of the label's 34-year history. As the guiding force behind Delos, she maintained standard-setting quality in artistic excellence, integration of new technology, innovative presentation, and careful attention to every aspect of production.
Haygood was a leader in digital recording beginning in 1979, working closely with inventor Thomas Stockham and his prototype Soundstream digital recording process. Her company was the first independent label to sell its CDs in the US. Delos's Director of Recording, John Eargle, received the Grammy Award for Sound Engineering in 2001. Virtually every major audio publication worldwide has recognized Delos as the highest achievement in quality recording.
In her company's 34-year history, Haygood produced recordings with some of the most honored names in the classical music field: Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra, Janos Starker, Jean Pierre Rampal, Arleen Auger, Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Andrew Litton, Zdenek Macal, James DePreist, Constantine Orbelian, Gerard Schwarz, David Shifrin, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Dennis Keene, Eugenia Zukerman, Ewa Podles, Olga Guryakova, Marina Domashenko and numerous others. Delos is respected worldwide both for its excellent recording of established names and its discoveries of rising talents. Haygood's company initiated significant trends in the classical music industry, among them the Great American Composers Series, Family Classics Series, and classical mood discs such as Carol Rosenberger's Perchance to Dream ? Lullabies for Children and Adults. Delos's "BabyNeeds" series was welcomed worldwide as the first and finest series ever produced for the very young.
Amelia Da Costa Stone Haygood was born in Gainesville, Florida. Her mother's side of the family descended from the original Spanish settlers of Florida. Her father, who came from a family of doctors, left a judgeship to join the law faculty of the University of Florida. Haygood grew up with an intense love for music, especially treasuring opera broadcasts and old recordings of the "golden age" singers.
Haygood's interest in languages and international relations took her to Paris to study at the Sorbonne when she was 16. While in Europe, she wrote
articles for her home town newspaper encouraging Americans to look beyond their then-isolationist point of view just before the beginning of World War II.
Back in the U.S., after majoring in history and international law, she went to
Washington, D.C. to work for the U.S. State Department, where she became Editor and Director of Publications for the State Department Interdepartmental Committee for Cultural and Scientific Cooperation.
Leaving Washington to marry J. Douglas Haygood, a clinical psychologist then practicing in Cleveland, Amelia Haygood initiated, for the International YWCA, a women's program designed to develop interests outside of the home, especially in public affairs. Haygood's interest and skill as a therapist began to emerge, and she went back to school to do graduate work in medicine and clinical psychology, eventually going into practice with her husband in Beverly Hills, California.
In the medical setting, Haygood worked in the Veteran's Administration for four years, developing programs for pre-and post-operative patients and contributing to research and publication in the fields of spinal cord injury and neurosurgery.
After the death of her husband, Haygood left private practice to become psychological consultant to the Los Angeles County Probation Department, developing a successful pilot treatment program for juvenile offenders and their families, and conducting workshops for professionals in the field of family treatment.
In the early 1970s, after seeing a close friend through a long terminal
illness, Haygood felt she had reached a crossroads, and catalytic change was taking place. Her lifelong passion for music, her interest in musicians, recordings and advanced sound technology, as well as her graduate study of psychoacoustics and the physics of music, merged in a new life direction. Long a friend of a number of American concert artists, Haygood had become increasingly disappointed in the lack of recording opportunities for these fine artists. It occurred to her that providing an international platform for outstanding American artists and musical groups could be a worthy mission. In 1973, Delos was born. She named her company after the birthplace of the Sun god Apollo, who brought music and healing to the world, elements Haygood always felt to be closely connected with each other and with her own life.
It was a whole new life for this remarkable woman in the 34 years following Delos's beginning. She consistently kept her company on the leading edge of developments in sound recording, working closely with pioneers in the field, and initiating trends in the industry. Until the last months of a 12-year battle with cancer, Haygood remained Executive Producer of all recording projects, maintaining artistic and quality control through the various stages of recording, post-production, manufacture and packaging. One of Haygood's greatest joys was to share the enthusiasms and activities of her younger staff. Her intense interest in people, and her vast experience in communicating with people from all walks of life and cultural backgrounds, gave Delos a unique perspective and direction.
A final word about Amelia from Dmitri Hvorostovsky:
"I've known Amelia for the past seven years. They have been the most exciting and thrilling years of my life. At what is probably the highest level of my career, I've been taking steps forward as I discovered where and how to go; taking risks, and challenging myself increasingly? The entire time, I have cherished Amelia's unwavering pride and involvement in everything that I've been through, every step of the way. I remember my first talks with Amelia, strolling in the little forest just outside of Moscow, where she listened to my life stories and talked and talked in return, with charm and wisdom? Ever since, whenever we've been together, something important was happening in my life. Red Square, Los Angeles, the Met, London, Paris, Milan? And through it all, Amelia's wholehearted interest and enthusiasm, her great knowledge and experience, her ongoing advice, have protected me from many mistakes, and have encouraged me to be brave and honest with myself and with other people? I loved Amelia and love her still. I am sad that I won't see her coming towards me with her outgoing, warmhearted smile, holding her usual glass of vodka in her hand?"