A report on Joan Sutherland

Sutherland in 1975
Sutherland in 1962
Joan Sutherland in 1990

Australian dramatic coloratura soprano known for her contribution to the renaissance of the bel canto repertoire from the late 1950s through to the 1980s.

- Joan Sutherland
Sutherland in 1975

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Metropolitan Opera and Lincoln Center

Metropolitan Opera

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American opera company based in New York City, resident at the Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center, currently situated on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

American opera company based in New York City, resident at the Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center, currently situated on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

Metropolitan Opera and Lincoln Center
Giulio Gatti-Casazza
Gatti-Casazza's last week at the Met (March 22–29, 1935)
Artur Bodanzky at the Metropolitan Opera in 1915
Otto Hermann Kahn in Berlin, 1931
Metropolitan Opera House in 1905
The new Met Opera House
Staircase

Other celebrated singers who debuted at the Met during Bing's tenure include: Roberta Peters, Victoria de los Ángeles, Renata Tebaldi, Maria Callas, who had a bitter falling out with Bing over repertoire,, Birgit Nilsson, Joan Sutherland, Régine Crespin, Mirella Freni, Renata Scotto, Montserrat Caballé, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Anna Moffo, James McCracken, Carlo Bergonzi, Franco Corelli, Alfredo Kraus, Plácido Domingo, Nicolai Gedda, Luciano Pavarotti, Jon Vickers, Tito Gobbi, Sherrill Milnes, and Cesare Siepi.

Marilyn Horne

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American mezzo-soprano opera singer.

American mezzo-soprano opera singer.

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Beniamino Prior as Wilhelm Meister and Marilyn Horne as the titular Mignon, Edmonton Opera, 1978.
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For many years, Horne was associated with the Australian soprano Dame Joan Sutherland in their performances of the bel canto repertoire.

Callas in 1958

Maria Callas

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American-born Greek soprano who was one of the most renowned and influential opera singers of the 20th century.

American-born Greek soprano who was one of the most renowned and influential opera singers of the 20th century.

Callas in 1958
The apartment house in Athens where Callas lived from 1937 to 1945
The Villa in Sirmione where Callas lived with Giovanni Battista Meneghini between 1950 and 1959
Callas's range in performance (highest and lowest notes both shown in red): from F-sharp below the Middle C (green) to E-natural above the High C (blue)
Callas acknowledges applause in 1959 at the Royal Concertgebouw in Amsterdam
Callas's rival, Renata Tebaldi, 1961
Tito Gobbi, 1970
Callas during her final tour in Amsterdam in 1973
Aristotle Onassis, who had an affair with Callas before he married Jackie Kennedy
The last residence of Maria Callas, in Paris
Portrait of Callas (2004), by Oleg Karuvits
Maria Callas with her husband Giovanni Battista Meneghini in 1957
Callas getting ready with the help of Luchino Visconti in Milan, 1957
Maria Callas as Giulia in the Opera "La Vestale", by Gaspare Spontini, 1954
Churchill with Maria Callas on Onassis' yacht in the late 50s

In 1952, she made her London debut at the Royal Opera House in Norma with veteran mezzo-soprano Ebe Stignani as Adalgisa, a performance which survives on record and also features the young Joan Sutherland in the small role of Clotilde.

Pavarotti upon receiving the Kennedy Center Honors, 2001

Luciano Pavarotti

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Italian operatic tenor who during the late part of his career crossed over into popular music, eventually becoming one of the most acclaimed and loved tenors of all time.

Italian operatic tenor who during the late part of his career crossed over into popular music, eventually becoming one of the most acclaimed and loved tenors of all time.

Pavarotti upon receiving the Kennedy Center Honors, 2001
Luciano Pavarotti in 1972
With Joan Sutherland in I puritani (1976)
From left: journalist Vincenzo Mollica, Pavarotti, Lucio Dalla and Zucchero on the first edition of Pavarotti & Friends (1992)
Elton John and Pavarotti in Modena, 1996
Luciano Pavarotti performing on 15 June 2002 at a concert in the Stade Vélodrome in Marseille
Pavarotti and family, N.Y.C., 1979–1983. Clockwise from top: Luciano Pavarotti, daughters Cristina and Lorenza Pavarotti, wife Adua Veroni, daughter Giuliana Pavarotti.
Pavarotti performing at the 2006 Winter Olympics opening ceremony
Statue of Pavarotti in Eilat IMAX
Grave of Luciano Pavarotti and his family in Montale Rangone
Pavarotti embraces Karen Kondazian on the set of Yes, Giorgio
Handprint of Luciano Pavarotti in front of the Gaiety Theatre, Dublin

An early coup involved his connection with Joan Sutherland (and her conductor husband, Richard Bonynge), who in 1963 was seeking a tenor taller than herself to take along on her 1965 tour to Australia.

Tenor Colin Lee, soprano Pretty Yende, Bonynge, mezzo-soprano Violina Anguelov and baritone George Stevens at a concert performance of Lucia di Lammermoor in Cape Town in April 2013

Richard Bonynge

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Australian conductor and pianist.

Australian conductor and pianist.

Tenor Colin Lee, soprano Pretty Yende, Bonynge, mezzo-soprano Violina Anguelov and baritone George Stevens at a concert performance of Lucia di Lammermoor in Cape Town in April 2013

He is the widower of Australian dramatic coloratura soprano Dame Joan Sutherland.

Domenico Donzelli, Giuditta Pasta,
and Giulia Grisi (original cast)

Norma (opera)

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Tragedia lirica or opera in two acts by Vincenzo Bellini with libretto by Felice Romani after the play Norma, ou L'infanticide by Alexandre Soumet.

Tragedia lirica or opera in two acts by Vincenzo Bellini with libretto by Felice Romani after the play Norma, ou L'infanticide by Alexandre Soumet.

Domenico Donzelli, Giuditta Pasta,
and Giulia Grisi (original cast)
Librettist Felice Romani
Giuditta Pasta for whom the role of Norma was created
Poster advertising the 1831 premiere
Domenico Donzelli sang Pollione
Giulia Grisi sang Adalgisa
Vincenzo Negrini sang Oroveso
Giulia Grisi dressed as Norma. In 1831, she also sang the role of Adalgisa
Act 2 finale, Luigi Lablache as Oroveso, Giulia Grisi (as Norma), Dominique Conti as Pollione. Her Majesty's Theatre, London, 1843
Alessandro Sanquirico's set design for act 1, scene 2, for the original production
Drawing for Norma (undated)

Notable exponents of the title role in the post-war period have been Maria Callas, Leyla Gencer, Joan Sutherland, and Montserrat Caballé.

Beverly Sills in 1956, photo by Carl Van Vechten

Beverly Sills

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American operatic soprano whose peak career was between the 1950s and 1970s.

American operatic soprano whose peak career was between the 1950s and 1970s.

Beverly Sills in 1956, photo by Carl Van Vechten
Sills in Manon, 1969
Sills in 1984
The tombstone of Beverly Sills in Kensico Cemetery

Her farewell performance was at San Diego Opera in 1980, where she shared the stage with Joan Sutherland in a production of Die Fledermaus.

Original poster for the premiere

Esclarmonde

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Opéra in four acts and eight tableaux, with prologue and epilogue, by Jules Massenet, to a French libretto by Alfred Blau and Louis Ferdinand de Gramont.

Opéra in four acts and eight tableaux, with prologue and epilogue, by Jules Massenet, to a French libretto by Alfred Blau and Louis Ferdinand de Gramont.

Original poster for the premiere

The opera has been revived sporadically in the modern era, most notably during the 1970s with Joan Sutherland, conducted by Massenet champion Richard Bonynge.

Fanny Tacchinardi Persiani as Lucia in the London premiere in 1838

Lucia di Lammermoor

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Dramma tragico in three acts by Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti.

Dramma tragico in three acts by Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti.

Fanny Tacchinardi Persiani as Lucia in the London premiere in 1838
Disegno per copertina di libretto, drawing for Lucia di Lammermoor (1954).
Lammermuir Hills, Scotland
Set design for act 3, scene 3 by Francesco Bagnara, circa 1844 (Civica Raccolta Stampe Bertarelli Milan)
A caricature of the "Lucia Sextet", circa 1900 (Civica Raccolta Stampe Bertarelli Milan)

After World War II, a number of sopranos were instrumental in giving new life to the opera, including Maria Callas (with performances from 1954 at La Scala and Berlin in 1955 under Herbert von Karajan) and Dame Joan Sutherland (with 1959 and 1960 performances at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden).

Caballé in Milan, 1971

Montserrat Caballé

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Spanish operatic soprano.

Spanish operatic soprano.

Caballé in Milan, 1971
Caballé in 1969
Caballé in 1975
As Rossini's Semiramide at the 1980 Aix-en-Provence Festival
Caballé in 1982.
Caballé with husband and son, at Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, Milan, 1971
Plaque at her birthplace in Barcelona
Music academy Montserrat Caballé in Arganda del Rey.

In Bellini's Norma, Caballé recorded both the title role (for RCA Red Seal in 1972, with Domingo as Pollione) and later the role of Adalgisa, to Joan Sutherland's Norma in a 1984 Decca recording conducted by Richard Bonynge.