Florica Cristoforeanu


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(b Rîmnicu Sărat, 16 May 1887; d Rio de Janeiro, 1 March 1960). Romanian soprano. She studied the piano, and later singing, in Bucharest and Milan (at the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory, with Vanerí Filippi and Bodrilla), making her début as Lucia at Capodistria in 1908. After touring widely in western Europe she returned to Bucharest for performances in operetta (1910–13). Growing international fame led to her appearances at opera houses throughout Europe, notably at Barcelona, and also at the Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires. She made her début as Santuzza at La Scala, where she also appeared from 1928 to 1932 as Salome under Richard Strauss, as Mariola in the première of Ildebrando Pizzetti's Fra Gherardo (1928), and as Carmen and Charlotte (Werther). By the time she retired she had mastered a repertory of more than 90 roles, embracing mezzo, dramatic, lyric and coloratura parts in opera and operetta. In Bucharest her Cio-Cio-San, Minnie (La fanciulla del West), Kundry and Adriana Lecouvreur were especially admired. Her range, both vocal and dramatic, was exceptional, enhanced by a richly coloured timbre and an intense commitment to all her roles. After her death her memoirs Amintiri din cariera mea lirică were published (Bucharest, 1964).

From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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