On This Day

High Notes On This Day
30 Fun Facts About Soprano Nadine Sierra
Nadine Sierra is enjoying one of the most spectacular careers in the opera world. On this day, May 14, 2018, she turns 30, already having managed a historic career by modern standards. So in celebration of the big 3-0 we look at 30 fun facts on Sierra. 1. She is a native of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. 2. Sierra trained at the Mannes College of Music and Marilyn Horne’s Music Academy…
High Notes On This Day
4 Rarely Performed Operas Monserrat Caballé and Sondra Radvanovsky Share
Monserrat Caballé and Sondra Radvanovsky are two of the most revered sopranos of their generation. Caballé was well-known for her expressive voice and her immense repertoire. Meanwhile, today Radvanovsky is dominating the Italian verismo, Bel canto, and Verdi repertoire showing her range and flexibility. Both sopranos also performed a number of unknown or rarely-performed operas. To celebrate their birthdays, which are one day apart, we look at the roles these two sopranoes…
High Notes On This Day
Fun Facts About Sergei Leiferkus’ Met Opera Career
Russian Baritone Sergei Leiferkus, born on April 4, 1946, is recognized for his unique vocal quality. If you haven’t heard him before, then you should, because he has one of the most individual sounds you’ll ever hear. In fact, here’s an excerpt from a role we will talk about in a bit. In any case, the baritone enjoyed a solid career in the world of Italian and Russian opera, performing…
High Notes On This Day
4 Major Met Opera Premieres Featuring Rosalind Elias
When you sing a major part of your career with one theater, you get to experience a ton of major moments in said organization’s history. Rosalind Elias, born on March 13, 1929, was such an artist, experiencing a major part of her artist life at the Metropolitan Opera. In sum, she showed up on the Met’s stage 687 times between 1954 and 1996, singing all kinds of repertoire ranging from…
High Notes On This Day
Mai Libera – How The Greatest Musical Passage in Verdi’s ‘La Traviata’ Explores Violetta’s Endless Suffering
Verdi’s “La Traviata” is one of the most iconic in music history. Why? It’s heroine Violetta is one of the most powerful and admirable characters in the art form. With her Verdi questioned the social boundaries of the time, taking a contemporary subject and placing it in the opera house during a time when opera was only intended to look backward. Looking in the mirror was not the function of…
High Notes On This Day
The Major Opera Recordings of Florence Quivar
Florence Quivar, born on March 3, 1944, is one of the great American mezzos of her time. She first came to love opera upon hearing the Met Opera on tour and then eventually launched on a mission to become a great opera singer in her own right. Her journey took her through the Julliard School, Philadelphia Academy of Music, and then a ton of major opera companies and orchestras including…
High Notes On This Day
The Defining Roles of Simon Estes’ Metropolitan Opera Career
Simon Estes, born on March 2, 1938, did not have an easy career path. While the bass-baritone succeeded in Europe in his early years, the United States didn’t take too well to him. He was only accepted for minor roles at most prominent theaters and it wasn’t until 1981, 16 years after his professional debut, that the Metropolitan Opera offered him a contract. The situation was so challenging for black…
High Notes On This Day
Five Rossini Works That Should Be Part Of The Standard Repertoire
Gioachino Rossini is one of the three Bel Canto masters whose music has been performed regularly over the years. However, unlike Bellini or Donizetti, Rossini has gotten the reputation for being a composer of comedy and sometimes his opera seria has been overlooked in favor of such masterpieces as "Il Barbiere di Siviglia," "Le Comte Ory," "La Cenerentola" and "Il Turco in Italia." In celebration of his birthday on Feb.…
High Notes On This Day
Failed Brotherhood: How These 4 Duets Form the Backbone of Verdi’s ‘La Forza del Destino’
Verdi’s “La Forza del Destino” is a messy work. Premiering first on Nov. 10, 1862 in Russia and then reappearing in its revised and finalized form on Feb. 27, 1869, the opera is clearly one that experienced tremendous transformation over the course of those seven years. But it’s messiness doesn’t necessarily derive from these compositional edits, but from the work’s very structure, or seeming lack thereof. When you look at…