The Major Opera Recordings of Florence Quivar

By David Salazar

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 the Met Opera, Cleveland Opera, NY Philharmonic, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Bavarian State Opera, La Scala, Deutsche Oper Berlin, and many others.

Through it all, she made a plethora of major recordings. Here are the operas she left behind.

Porgy and Bess

This was her first opera recording and was also a major Grammy Award winner. Dating to 1976, it featured Willard White, Leona Mitchell, Barbara Hendricks, and many others.

Four Saints in Three Acts

Quivar was a major proponent of the music of Virgil Thomson, so it is no surprise to find her discography featuring his opera. The recording was made in 1982 and features Betty Allen, Benjamin Matthews, Arthur Thompson, Clamma Dale, William Brown, and Gwendolyn Bradley under Joel Thome.

Un Ballo in Maschera

There are two recordings, one on video and the other audio. The 1989 CD under Herbert von Karajan stars Plácido Domingo, Josephine Barstow, and Leo Nucci. Two years later, the Met recorded a video performance featuring Aprile Millo, Nucci, and Luciano Pavarotti. Quivar appears as Ulrica.

Luisa Miller

This Verdi opera was recorded in 1992 with Quivar as Federica. Domingo, Millo, Vladimir Chernov and Wendy White lead the cast.

Oedipus Rex

In the role of Jocasta, Quivar worked alongside Phillip Langridge, James Morris, Jan-Hendrik Rootering, and Donald Kaasch. This was recorded in 1993.


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