Grace Bumbry

Grace Bumbry, an American opera singer, is considered one of the leading mezzo-sopranos of her generation, as well as a major soprano for many years. She was a member of a pioneering generation of singers who followed Marian Anderson in the world of classical music and paved the way for future African-American opera and classical singers. Bumbry's voice was rich and sizable, possessing a wide range, and was capable of producing a very distinctive plangent tone. In her prime, she also possessed good agility and bel canto technique. She was particularly noted for her fiery temperament and dramatic intensity on stage. More recently, she has also become known as a recitalist and interpreter of lieder, and as a teacher. From the late 1980s on, she seemed to concentrate her career in Europe, rather than in the US. A long-time resident of Switzerland, she now makes her home in Salzburg, Austria.

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