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ELISABETH GRUMMER

The German soprano Elisabeth Grümmer (1911–1986) originally trained as an actress but it was not until 1940 that she made her début as a singer at Aachen as the First Flowermaiden in Parsifal. She moved to Duisberg in 1942 and four years later joined the Stadtische (later Deutsche) Oper, Berlin where she remained until 1972. During the 1950s she sang in Dresden, at Bayreuth, where her rôles included Elsa, Freia and Gutrune, Glyndebourne and at the Edinburgh Festival with the Hamburg Staatsoper, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Eva in 1951 under Beecham. She also appeared regularly at the Salzburg Festival and in Vienna but her American début was delayed until 1967, when she appeared both at the Metropolitan and City Operas in New York. She was a consummate Mozartian as can be discerned from her interpretations of the rôles of Ilia, Donna Anna and the Countess, which well illustrate her splendid vocal resources and excellent musicianship. Her repertoire also included Ellen Orford in Peter Grimes, the Marschallin, the Countess in Capriccio and Agathe in Der Freischütz. She recorded extensively for EMI.


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