Personalities | Montserrat Caballé | Modern Era | Opera
b. 1933, Spanish
This soprano’s melting pianissimo has earned her a faithful following, but she is also one of the few operatic singers to have had a hit pop record – Freddie Mercury, of rock band Queen, wrote ‘Exercises in Free Love’ for her, which was featured on the award-winning album Barcelona. Caballé’s training began at the Barcelona Liceo, where she won the gold medal in 1954. She joined the Basel Opera company two years later and sang an assortment of roles. Her detractors consider her to be overly focused on her tone, but her performances of bel canto rarities are exemplary. She has also brought zarzuela and Spanish songs to an international audience.
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