Sunday, March 1, 2015

Soprano Lucine Amara Celebrates 90th Birthday Today

Lucine Amara in the title role of Aida
Lucine Amara turns 90-years old today. She began her career as a chorister with the San Francisco Opera. After starting out as a contralto, she switched to soprano and by 1946 was making her debut at the War Memorial Auditorium. The biggest part of her career was on the East coast at The Metropolitan Opera where she sang from 1950-1991 in 748 performances. She debuted as the Celestial Voice in Verdi's Don Carlo with a cast that included Jussi Björling, Delia Rigal, Robert Merrill, Fedora Barbieri, Cesare Siepi, and Jerome Hines. Her roles at the beginning of her career in New York tended to be mostly comprimario: First Lady (Die Zauberflöte), Ines (Il Trovatore), Wellgunde (Götterdämmerung), Kate Pinkerton (Madama Butterfly), Priestess (Aida), Countess Ceprano (Rigoletto), Frasquita (Carmen), Serving Woman (Elektra), Leaders of the People (Alceste), Flower Maiden (Parsifal), Annina (La Traviata). Rare exceptions in the first two years of performing at the MET were the roles of Nedda in I Pagliacci and Micaela in Carmen. By 1953 she was singing Mimì in La Bohème under the baton of Alberto Erede. She would go on to sing Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Countess Almaviva (Le Nozze di Figaro), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Desdemona (Otello), Antonia (Les Contes d'Hoffmann), Tatiana (Eugene Onegin), Leonora (La Forza del Destino), Liù (Turandot), Fiordiligi (Così fan tutte), Eva (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg), Ariadne (Ariadne auf Naxos), Marguerite (Faust), Ellen Orford (Peter Grimes), Luisa (Luisa Miller), Maddalena (Andrea Chénier),  Alice Ford (Falstaff), Cio-Cio San (Madama Butterfly), Elsa (Lohengrin), Amelia (Un Ballo in Maschera), and the title roles in Aida and Tosca. Her final roles at the MET were Mother Marie (Dialogues des Carmélites), Santuzza (Cavalleria Rusticana), Gertrude (Hänsel und Gretel), and Madelon (Andrea Chénier). [Source] Be sure to visit the birthday tribute page for more photos and audio clips. More images after the jump.












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