Madrid’s Teatro de la Zarzuela Honors Teresa Berganza with a Plaza in Her name

By Chris Ruel

Famed Spanish mezzo-soprano, Teresa Berganza, was honored with a plaza in her name at the entrance to Madrid’s Teatro de la Zarzuela. 

At a ceremony on Mar. 16, 2023, the granddaughter of the celebrated mezzo-soprano Sofía Álvarez Lavilla conveyed her sentiments, saying, “She [Berganza] wasn’t a fan of tributes, but she would have really enjoyed this gift.”

Berganza’s 90th birthday would have coincided with the day of the inauguration.

The mezzo, born in 1935, studied piano and voice at the Madrid Conservatory. In 1954, her vocal abilities were recognized at the conservatory when she was awarded first prize for singing in 1954. In 1957, Berganza made her opera debut at the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence in “Così Fan Tutte.”

Berganza gained a reputation for her performances of Mozart and Rossini operas, composers she often sang at milestone debuts. At the Met, she sang music by Mozart and Rossini exclusively.