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Sunday, 13 November 2016

Opera singer

French opera singer Madame Elisabeth Thible became the first woman to fly on June 4, 1784 when she went up in a Montgolfier balloon.

Mozart disliked prima donna Adriana Ferrarese del Bene, who was know for nodding her head down on low notes and raising her head on high notes. The composer filled her showpiece aria in Così fan tutte, "Come scoglio" with constant leaps from low to high and high to low in order to make the diva's head "bob like a chicken" onstage.

English romantic poem Lord Byron was put off a growing romance with a visiting Italian opera singer called "La Pulcella," by watching her devour enormous dinners. Night after night he saw her fill her mouth with chicken wings, custards, peaches and sweetbreads.

American coloratura soprano Marie Selika Williams (c. 1849–1937) was the first African-American artist to perform in the White House. On November 18, 1878 she sang for President Rutherford B. Hayes and First Lady Lucy Webb Hayes in the Green Room and was introduced by Frederick Douglass.

Madame Selika as photographed by Maud Cuney-Hare.

U.S. socialite and amateur soprano Florence Foster Jenkins (1868-1944) became a sensation due to her out-of-tune singing. Her public debut came in 1944, age 76, at Carnegie Hall — described by a critic as "one of the weirdest mass jokes New York has ever seen". She died days later. Foster Jenkins was played by Meryl Streep in a 2016 movie.

Marian Anderson, became the first African-American singer to appear at the Metropolitan Opera on January 7, 1955. Her performance as Ulrica in Giuseppe Verdi's Un ballo in maschera at the Met broke barriers for black artists in the States.

Marian Anderson in 1940, by Carl Van Vechten

The most expensive opera costume of all time was worn by Adelina Patti at London's Covent Garden in 1895. It was worth £15 million ($22 million).

The phrase "prima donna" is Italian for "first lady." Opera companies originally used the term to designate their leading female singer to whom the prime roles would be given. Because of their pulling power at the box office, some of these Prima Donnas were overly demanding and exhibited an inflated view of themselves, however because of their talent, and pulling power at the box office, their excesses were indulged. Today the term has become a mainstream word outside opera to describe an often-temperamental person with high expectations of others who becomes angry when his or her standards or demands are not met/

Mariah Carey's mother, Patricia (Hickey), is a former mezzo-soprano New York City opera singer.

Taylor Swift's maternal grandmother, Marjorie Finlay, was a professional opera singer, and inspired Taylor to become a singer.

The most curtain calls taken in a single performance is 165, by Luciano Pavarotti at the Deutsche Opera in Berlin on February 24, 1988, after singing the part of Nemorino in Donizetti's comic opera L’Elisir D’Amore. The audience’s applause lasted one hour and seven minutes.

 Luciano Pavarotti performing at the opening of the Constantine Palace in Strelna.. By, 

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