Portal:Spain/Selected biography/10

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Lucrezia Bori

Lucrezia Bori (born Valencia, 24 December 1887 – died New York, 14 May 1960) was a celebrated Spanish operatic singer, a lyric soprano. Her real name was Lucrecia Borja y González de Riancho and her family were reputed to be descended from the Borgias. Bori studied in Milan with Vidal and made her debut at the Teatro Adriano in Rome as Micaëla in Bizet's Carmen in 1908. in 1911 she sang Octavian in the Italian premiere of Der Rosenkavalier at La Scala. Her career somewhat started at the Metropolitan Opera, New York City, where she became a favorite among regulars, began during the Met's first visit to Paris, in 1910 (June 9; Manon Lescaut); it would last until 1936, although from 1915 to 1921 she stopped singing due to nodes on her vocal cords. She appeared a total of 654 times. She was famous for her portrayals of Manon in Massenet's opera, Mimì in La bohème, Fiora in L' amore dei trè rè, Mélisande in Pelléas et Mélisande and Violetta in La traviata.

Her farewell gala on 29 March 1936 was one of the great events at the Metropolitan. Bori sang scenes from Manon and La traviata, with contributions from Flagstad, Melchior, Rethberg, Pinza, Ponselle, Martinelli, Tibbett and Richard Crooks. Ever the Grande Dame, after her retirement from singing she was elected to the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Opera Association and became chairman of the Metropolitan Opera Guild.