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Celebrated opera singer Joan Sutherland dies at 83

Australian-born soprano Joan Sutherland, who was known as "La Stupenda" and was widely acclaimed as the best opera singer of her time, died Oct. 10 at her home near Geneva.

Ms. Sutherland made her debut in 1947 as Dido in "Dido and Aeneas," and spent decades performing regularly at the major opera houses of Europe and the United States. An agile vocalist with an impressive stage presence, she helped revive the bel canto repertoire -- romantic Italian operas from the 18th and 19th century that had largely fallen out of fashion.

She was one of the last links to a time when opera played a much more significant role in the popular imagination than it does today -- a time when she was a frequent guest on the Ed Sullivan Show or the Tonight Show. She was also instrumental in getting early attention for Luciano Pavarotti, whom she took on tour in 1965, when he was a young and largely unknown tenor.

She retired in 1990 after singing in 48 operas and recording 60 albums. Her last performance was in Sydney; she sang Margaret de Valois in a production of Les Huguenots.

By Emma Brown  | October 11, 2010; 11:31 AM ET
Categories:  Musicians  | Tags:  Joan Sutherland died; Joan Sutherland obituary; Joan Sutherland opera singer; Joan Sutherland soprano  
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Comments

A memorial site was created for Joan Sutherland! Honor her memory by contributing to her memorial site http://joansutherland.people2remember.com/

Posted by: estael_oscora | October 12, 2010 7:24 AM | Report abuse

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