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Master Class Historical Context

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Historical Context

Maria Callas

Maria Callas was by common consent the greatest dramatic soprano of her generation, excelling in the Italian bel canto repertoire. She had a mesmerizing stage presence, and although many regarded her voice as flawed, she could communicate intensity and emotion as no other soprano could. Her personal life was scarcely less dramatic than the operatic roles she played, and there were well publicized incidents involving her legendary fiery temperament, her feuds with opera managements, her rivalries with other singers, and her love affairs.

Callas was born in New York in 1923. She was American by birth and early upbringing, but her parents were Greek, and in 1937 she and her mother left the United States for Greece. Callas was also Italian by virtue of her marriage to Giovanni Battista Meneghini, which lasted from 1949 to 1959.

In Greece, Callas became a pupil of the soprano Elvira de Hidalgo at the...

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This section contains 1,024 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Master Class Study Guide
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Master Class from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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