(b Laurel, Miss., 1927).
Amer. soprano. Sang Mrs Ford in Falstaff in student prod. at Juilliard Sch. Chosen by Virgil Thomson to sing in revival of Four Saints in Three Acts in NY and Paris, 1952. Sang Bess in Porgy and Bess in tour of USA 1952–4 and in Vienna, Berlin, Paris, and London in 1955. Recital début NY 1954, then NBC tv 1955. S. Francisco début 1957; Chicago 1959; Vienna 1958; CG 1958; Salzburg 1959; La Scala 1960; NY Met 1961; Paris 1968. One of finest Verdi sops. of her day and memorable Butterfly and Tosca. Also noted exponent of mus. of Samuel Barber (gave f.p. of his Prayers of Kierkegaard with Boston SO cond. Munch, 1954, and created Cleopatra in NY Met première of his Antony and Cleopatra, 1966). Last opera appearance was as Aida at NY Met, 3 Jan. 1985.