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Open Features: Frances Alda

Peter Wintersgill outlines the career of the New Zealand singer Frances Alda.

Born
31 May, 1883, in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Adolescence
Frances Alda studied with Matilde Marchese in Paris.

Adult life
She made her debut there as Manon in 1804 at the Opera Comique. Her British debut was at Covent Garden in 1906 and her Italian debut at La Scala Milan in 1908.

Sang at the New York Met from 1908 to 1930. She married the director there, Gatti Casazza, in 1910.

Frances Alda had a pure lyrical voice, suitable for such roles as Gilda and Mimi.

She died on 18 September, 1952, in Venice, aged 69.

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