Bettina Freeman

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Bettina Freeman as Madame Butterfly, c. 1913

Bettina Freeman (1889, Boston – ?) was a Boston-born opera singer with the San Carlo Opera Company who was active from 1911 to 1920.[1][2][3][4]


Bettina Freeman was born in Boston in 1889. Her mother was French and her father an American of German descent. She was educated in the public schools and began to take lessons on the piano at the age of thirteen, her teacher being Madame de Berg Lofgren, who began to teach her singing also when she was sixteen. When the Boston Opera enterprise was launched Madame Lofgren took her young pupil to the opera school, and after some coaching with Minetti and Conti, Freeman made her debut as Siebel in Faust, and sang with the Boston Opera Company for one season. Seeking an opportunity for larger parts she went to New York where she was engaged for the Quinlan Opera Company, and made a tour through England and Scotland, singing leading parts—Madame Butterfly, Micaela, Gretel—, and even singing Elizabeth in Tannhäuser, a role considered much too taxing for a young singer. Her voice was of mezzo-soprano quality with an unusual range. Freeman had a rather unusual study path, for in 1907, being consumed with the desire to study abroad, she went to Paris, took three or four lessons, was taken ill, and returned to Boston in time to resume her lessons, in the fall, with Madame Lofgren. She thus made her operatic debut with practically no European study or experience.[5]



  1. ^ "MUSICAL AND DRAMATIC NOTES". The West Australian. XXVII, (7, 819). Western Australia. 22 April 1911. p. 3. Retrieved 2 April 2017 – via National Library of Australia., ...The company will include...Bettina Freeman,...
  2. ^ "QUINLAN'S OPERATIC ARTISTS". The Sunday Times (1363). New South Wales, Australia. 3 March 1912. p. 20. Retrieved 2 April 2017 – via National Library of Australia., ... and the Metropolitan Opera, New York; Bettina Freeman, a young singer, 'whose successes with the Boston Opera have been repeated in England...
  3. ^ "MUSIC AND DRAMA". The Sydney Morning Herald (23, 138). New South Wales, Australia. 9 March 1912. p. 4. Retrieved 2 April 2017 – via National Library of Australia., ...In "Tannhauser" Miss Bettina Freeman, of the Boston Opera, is the prima donna...
  4. ^ "Musical Notes". Evening Journal (Adelaide). XLVI, (12815). South Australia. 25 May 1912. p. 8. Retrieved 2 April 2017 – via National Library of Australia., ...Miss Bettina Freeman has won distinction as Gretel while her "Madame Butterfly" and "Elizabeth" are spoken of as fine interpretations....
  5. ^ Henry Charles Lahee (1912). The grand opera singers of to-day. L.C. Page and Company.
  6. ^ "Bettina Freeman as Tosca. Cibelli Sings Cavaradossi and Valle Scarpla at Manhattan" (PDF). The New York Times. September 23, 1920. Retrieved 2009-07-30.
  7. ^ "Bettina Freeman the Heroine in San Carlo Opera Production" (PDF). The New York Times. October 6, 1920. Retrieved 2009-07-30.