Throughout the history of opera the leading lady has mesmerized audiences through the intense characters they were projecting on stage as well as off stage. We are accustomed for the prima donna to be the soprano, the dying heroine, around whom a veritable cult of celebrity has been constructed. However, occasionally during the 19th century, and with more regularity after the mid 20th century, mezzo-sopranos also achieved this status, through their portrayal of very distinct characters, but what triggered this shift?
Adriana Festeu discusses the social elements that contributed to this development, with illustrations of the roles that mezzo-sopranos appropriated to their vocal category throughout the centuries.
- Concert Duration:
- approx. 2 hours