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On-demand interviews with local and national classical music artists.

The Metropolitan Opera Mourns The Loss Of Jessye Norman

Soprano Jessye Norman (photo: Carol Friedman)
Soprano Jessye Norman

John Bischoff, Writer and Radio Producer for The Met shares memories of the late Jessye Norman.


Starting with her Met debut as Cassandra in Berlioz’s  Les Troyens on Opening Night of the Met’s centennial 1983–84 season, Norman sang more than 80 performances with the company, dazzling audiences with her beautiful tone, extraordinary power, and musical sensitivity. A revered Wagnerian, at the Met she was beloved for her interpretations of Elisabeth in  Tannhäuser, Sieglinde in  Die Walküre, and Kundry in  Parsifal. Her wide-ranging Met repertoire also included works by Poulenc, Janáček, Bartók, and Schoenberg. She will perhaps be best remembered for her glorious, definitive portrayal of Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos. “Jessye Norman was one of the greatest artists to ever sing on our stage,” said General Manager Peter Gelb. “Her legacy shall forever live on.” The Met extends condolences to Ms. Norman’s family and friends.