It's her birthday - Leontyne Price

Leontyne Price - Tosca, Metropolitan Opera, 1962
photo by Louis Melancon
While we are on the subject of Puccini's ever popular heroine, one of the greatest of Twentieth Century Tosca's celebrates her 87th birthday today, Leontyne Price.  Her gorgeously toned voice and impressive stage prescence saw her a favourite both in America and Europe, recording the role in the studio twice, once with Herbert von Karajan and again about 10 years later with Zubin Mehta.

While they are both brilliant performances, I can't help but return to the earlier Vienna recording for Decca in 1961.  The sonic depth for this recording and Maestro von Karajan's vast concept are riveting, Price is simply superb and in great company with Giuseppe di Stefano and Giuseppe Taddei.  Listen to her Vissi d'Arte below to understand what I mean, she was perfect for this music.  Happy birthday Diva!