Top Ten Greatest Female Opera Singers
The Top TenXW
She created her own art, and some people hated it because it wasn't classically beautiful, but who cares it sounded way better and she is by far not only the most talented soprano of all time, but her veracity, her willingness to show facts, accuracy, and honesty in very aspect of her career is so amazing even on top of all her talent. She didn't care about beauty as much as she cared about creating her own honest style that to this day has changed the way sopranos sing, she was honest and cared solely about what she wanted to accomplish and not what everyone else thought if her. She broke through with unbelievable talent that was her own individual sounds that were out of the norm, but were so amazing. I hate opera singers apt just because I find orbiting, although they do hAve some of the most astonishingly and amazingly beautiful voices, it's just not my genre of choice. Without callas being the first soprano to breakout of the norm of society, and create her ow even more amazing ...more
It's Maria Callas, does anything else need to be said but, anyway easily the greatest female opera singer of all time. The love of her life wasn't another human but, opera music and when one listens to her singing you can instantaneously hear that love. She also, possessed a great ability to be able to sing the greatest love of her life and, in doing so provided the world with the greatest opera singer the world has ever seen. Marvellous Maria Callas, your legacy will live forever!
Decades after Callas's death and her legend lives on. Ask the person in the street to name a female opera singer and chances are the answer will be, "Maria Callas" - the same cannot be said for others on this list! Callas's interpretations may not always have been the most technically accurate, but her emotion, passion and soul shone through. And isn't that what art is all about? The ability to stir something inside you that cannot always be explained? It is rather like Monet's "smears" and "blobs". At face value they are not technically art, but when you look at the whole picture, it is beautiful... For me, Callas's vocal range was unsurpassed by others of her genre, which gave her the most amazing versatility. Plus she was a person who refused to conform to a mould, especially in a time when women tended to have less freedom than they enjoy now. Yes, she made mistakes, but Callas's honesty made her human and a beautiful person. And for all of these reasons, her legend lives on.
Loved her from the first moment I heard her. Complete rapture she is a true beacon.V67 Comments
Her voice is just stunning. When she sings Ave Maria I get shivers!
She is both mesmerizing and very talented. Despite all of her talent and voice, she is a really sweet person. I've met her in person, got an autopgraph and a picture with her, and all I can say is, that she is one of the sweetest people I've meet. Beauty, voice, talent together with kindess - perfection!
She is the best singer this world ever gave birth to!
She's not just a good opera singer... She also has a unique voice and the feelings she conveys while singing are simply stunning and unbeatable.
Only Tarja could make me cry!
She is just... unique.
Tarja is Tarja, and no one can beat that.
I know her technique is not perfect, but who has a perfect technique?
Besides, her voice is just gorgeous, and there is no technique that can teach that to anyone.
Tarja is the best singer ever, hear her live performances. End of conversation.V81 Comments
Probably the greatest diva in the millenium. All other divas should strive for the perfection of her technique and evocative and moving interpretations. Luciano Pavarotti called her the voice of the century - Sherrill Milne said in one interview he felt pained to sing on cue as it seemed rude to interrupt such an equisite performance. Peers are the best judges and you have to go with them. Of course, this is all subjective but the respect of her peers - the truly knowledgeable in my judgement makes her the greatest of all time.
Dame Joan Sutherland is in my opinion the best soprano of all time: Perfect technique, pure and rich voice and great interpretation skills.
Voice of unmatched beauty and skill. In her later years, as with most, she had difficulty with her middle range. Yet in her prime, she had control that was unmatched by any other coloratura! Her vocal acrobatics in the Bell Song or The Mad Scene from Lucia the Lamamoor were pure and perfect and never equalled by any other soprano!
No one can surpass her. I have listened to countless others and Sutherland is the only one who gives me absolute joy. Her voice is rich, vibrant and authentic. Many others are wonderful and entertaining but they don't make me smile like Sutherland does.V43 Comments
Experiencing her art and voice live was a bucket list dream before I had ever heard the term or reached an age when I needed to. Twenty years on now, for me she is simply nonpareil.
She has turned me on to oprea, after listening to her sing
By far the most beautiful voice on the opera stage today. Her ability to express different emotions is unique! For me she stays number one. I listened to her way back in the 80's when she participated in the Unisa singers competition in South Africa. Even then the quality was unique and promising. I was fortunate to meet her again in 2009 when she visited South Africa.
Her voice seeps into the soul and tops it upV13 Comments
L am in shock to see Leontyne Price in the 22nd spot on your list considering some of the previous ones. It is very clear to me that the voters are not familiar with her work nor her struggles as an african- american in the world of opera and else where. The opportunities were not the same for all; nevertheless her talent could not be suppress.
I experienced her performance of Aida at the Met and at her retirement in the same role; it was absolutely breath taking. She was regal and so was her voice. Review your list!
Leontyne Price was my mother's favorite female opera singer in the '50s. Mom's favorite performance was Ms. Price in Ll Trovatore. Time magazine called her voice, "Rich, supple and shining. It was in its prime capable of effortlessly soaring from a smoky mezzo to the pure soprano gold of a perfectly spun high C. "
I've been attending live opera since 1947. Leontine Price is the best of any. No one can compare. Some may get there. Price was technically correct, emotionally exquisite and with a quality at each range that was beautiful and flowed flawlessly from one note to another. Listen!
She's number one, Renee Fleming comes in with me as a close second. I have sung opera myself. Its using your body as an instrument; you must get rest, do vocalises, be a dancer, a healthy woman, and a precise musician.V15 Comments
Her voice is as smooth as silk! I get chills when I hear her sing!
I had the pleasure of meeting Dame Kanawa on a flight that I was a working
Crew member. She was ever so gracious & so humble when I acknowledged her
& mentioned how much I enjoyed hearing her on PBS' Great Performances. After the service was completed she took the time to come into the galley & personally thank us for our professional & personal service.
All though I think many "up-and-coming" women may eventually have better voices, I think all females in the opera world wish to be like her.
She has such depth of soul and breadth of vocal repertory. She sings from the heart.
For me, the most perfect female voice ever.V20 Comments
La Superba! Listen to her rendition of Puccini's 'O Mio Babbino Caro' and then tell yourself Sarah Brightman is a better "Opera" singer. This lady is in a league all her own. Number one all the way!
A depth and range of voice that is so effortless and only a stone heart could not be moved.
She is unsurpassed in her many roles and her recording of songs from her native land is quite superb.
Ms Caballe completely captures the soul of the momment in her voice and delivery. She also has such a radiant personality that sheer beauty shines through in her presence.
One of the greatest!V38 Comments
I just want to say that I voted Sarah cause I know no one in particular who is an opera singer. Sarah might be trained to reach the soprano notes, and her voice probably has the operatic touch, but she belongs to the world of theater, not opera. She is fantastic and all, but as an opera singer? I'm not so sure. Her voice is angelic, I know, that is why I don't think she belongs in the opera class. She's more of a theatrical soprano that has a more developed operatic voice of Christine that most, but that voice doesn't fit in to be availed in operatic ways. No hate... I love Sarah, loved her as Christine, loved her as a stage actress, just not an opera singer.
OMG! I AM JUST READING COMMENTS ABOUT TARJA TURUNEN -SO CALLED SINGING- AND I CANT BELIVE WHAT I SEE! ARE YOU PEOPLE DEAF OR WHAT? TARJAS INTERPRETATION OF AVE MARIA IS ONE OF THE WORST EVER! THE WOMAN IS ROUGH AS A BULLDOG! THATS WHY SHE DID ANOTHER VERSION, WITH "FLAT" SINGING, BECAUSE SHE CAN NEVER-EVER SING THE ORIGINAL ONE WITH PROPER TECHNICS, AND WICH IS EVEN MORE IMPORTANT-WITH PROPER FEELINGS THAT SARAH BRIGHTMAN (OR MARIA CALLAS) HAS! PLEASE, LISTEN TO SOME REAL OPERA, BEFORE YOU JUMP ON SUCH A TERRIBLE INTERPRETATIONS!
Sorry to burst all your bubbles, but Sarah Brightman is not an opera singer. She's a crossover singer. She doesn't sing with a true opera technique, and how many of her songs that you hear are actually from operas as opposed to being just opera-sounding pop tunes? None of you people actually know what opera singers sound like if you think Sarah Brightman is the best opera singer.
People who do not know or even LIKE opera are posting on this? I mean really, anyone who knows the SLIGHTEST (and I mean slightest, like what it actually is) thing about opera would know that Sarah Brightman is NOT worthy of the list nor is actually an opera singer! GET SOME KNOWLEDGE PEOPLE! OPERA IS A NOTORIOUSLY DIFFICULT ART FORM AND TAKES YEARS OF TRAINING. IT IS QUITE FRANKLY INSULTING TO SEE THE GREATS OF OPERA COMPARED TO SOMEONE WHO CANNOT EVEN SING IN TUNE! - izzypitmanV31 Comments
Had she lived today. Her voice would be more than a distant memory and poor quality recordings. We've never anything like it... Before or since..
One of the most glorious voices of all time
She is the best voice of all the time. Who does not know this is ignorant. For sure. Ask the experts.
Never heard of her.V7 Comments
I've been told that there are other prodigies in the world, that prodigy is not as rare as I think, and that Miss Evancho is quite good but not a performer that is nothing less than a treasure for entire world. Well, with the advent of YouTube and streaming music services, it's actually possible to listen to the "others," and that's what they all are -- also-rans. A voice like this can't come along more often that once in a generation, perhaps less often, and it's therefore my belief that that she's the standard by which all others will be judged within a few years. That's why she already should be near the top of this list: she hasn't achieved as much as the others, but the rating here is "the best," not the most enduring or experienced.
This list has the top 11 greatest female opera singers PLUS Jackie Evancho. This is very high praise indeed for a thirteen year old singer. Should you ever doubt her name belongs on this list, listen to her CDs, or go to YouTube and listen. Jackie just naturally reaches her audience the way Opera stars WISH they could reach theirs. These ladies have all worked very very hard over their careers to achieve their positions in Opera, and they certainly deserve their accolades. However, Jackie is such a colossal natural talent, that many believe she deserves a place on this list.
This will be an interesting list in another 10 years.
If there is a voice that provokes disbelief, this is it. When you go to an opera, you expect operatic voices. Here is a child who has been accused of lip synching, (the ultimate compliment) and of being an angel. That her voice can stand alone as one of the best should be proof enough, seeing it's source does make one wonder.
I love your voice. When you sing I get chills and sometimes cry. Your music touches my heart.V56 Comments
Described as the "Angel of Australia", Mirusia is undoubtedly one of the greatest soprano opera singers of the 21st century. Her accolades speak for themselves:
Youngest winner in history of the Dame Joan Sutherland Opera Competition.
Has accompanied the world renowned violinist, Andre Rieu on a 6 year world tour.
ARIA Award winner
Lead soloist in Benjamin Britten's "War Requiem".
Apart from her crowning achievements, Mirusia is considered by many to be one of the most down-to-earth and respected celebrities. Her passion for music and helping underprivileged children has made Mirusia an ambassador for two significant foundations:
Australian Children's Music Foundation
Dutch Social Network Foundation
Mirusia's ongoing efforts have raised much needed funds for children in Australia and abroad. Australia is proud and honoured to have such an amazing individual in our music industry!
Mirusia has a beautiful voice, and a passion for her profession. She also appears to care deeply for her audience, and engages with us through her bright smile, and laughter, and occasional joke. She is constantly implementing new ways to be creative on the stage, and I love the fact that her career has expanded and is not just limited to working with Andre. She is also a superb world citizen and donates her time, and effort to various causes which help people and young children. Keep up the great work Mirusia.
Mirusia is truly our Angel of Australia. She is a delight to hear her sing and her ongoing efforts in helping underprivileged children is a testimony to her passion for music and in raising much needed funds for children. She is a beautiful person with a wonderful heart and she deserves all the recognition that she can get. Australia is very proud for have and to know such a wonderful person in Mirusia.
How it is possible not to top this list by Sumi JoV145 Comments
Buy the DVD/CD Carmen Monarcha. It has all kinds of great music on it - some well known opera arias and some standards and some by Brazilian composers. Carmen is a rare gift to music - a beautiful voice, great performing skills, great passion and a natural beauty as well.
Everyone should hear the DVD! The opera purists will no doubt scoff but everything this great artist does is from the heart and will often bring a tear to your eye. Beautiful in every way. O Mio Babbino Caro and Ave Maria will break your heart. A modern Callas in many ways such as her passion expression and acting skills but without the histrionics and unpredictable nature of Callas. A lovely girl with a lovely personality who deserves to be in the top ten.
Carmen Monarcha has a voice that makes you realise what your ears are for, the full package of range, power, tone, interpretation and passion.
When I first heard her sing, I fell off the chair-spellbound by that fantastic voice and stage craft. She can make time stand still, nothing else matters, and you tend to forget to breathe for fear of missing something. Totally captivating, unbelievably good. Carmen-the voice of a Goddess. WOW!
Carmen monarcha is an amazing singer who puts feeling into the songs she sings. With her a song is not just a lot of words one after the other... I would love A. Carmen Monarcha DVDV43 Comments
She has such a beautiful light lyric coloratura soprano voice. I love it, but she is a terrible diva
Yeah, really a sweet lovely sound though a very small voice. But it is clear as a bell. She is a stunning woman. Too bad being too much of a diva. But there are other divas who are worse than her and it never hurt their careers. In fact, one of the top contenders for this title happens to be epitomy of a diva.
Lovely voice that I was only once lucky to hear
Beautiful girl, beautiful voiceV4 Comments
One of the greatest operatic voices who has ever lived. Unsurpassed in Wagner operas.
Who have done Turandot or Brunhilde better?
I totally agree, Birgit Nilsson!
The real queen of the opera. Higher than Callas, higher than anyone.V5 Comments
Marilyn Horne is a mezzo-soprano opera singer with an amazing ability to sing beautiful coloratura passages. She makes her opera roles come alive with superb acting.
I heard her sing in a cathedral in Philadelphia accompanied by strings and a jazz orchestra. I'll never forget it. Her voice was gorgeous and full, her emotional expression was superb. She sang arias, jazz and gospel that night. I'm unsophisocated in understanding of operatic music, but she was moving in voice, physical presence and expression. She walked through the cathedral as she sang a set of gospel hymns. She moved like an Egyptian Queen in long, heavy gowns. It brings tears to my eyes to remember it. Wonderful!
Such a rich voice that defies conventional classification. I love sopranos. so many on these list are great to sublime. For me though, Jessye is in a class on her own. Watching her during a performance is like being in the presence of a divine being whose voice penetrates deep into one's soul.
She is one of the reasons I started listening to opera! She is an amazing woman with an amazing gift. Not only can I listen to her sing, I love to listen to her speak. I've watched interviews with her. Her stories about life experiences and her wisdom are captivating. Love her!
Beautiful voice. Beautiful Person. Beautiful Opera Diva!V8 Comments
I am not a fan of opera, but after listening to Angela, who really sparked the emotions with her passion and voice, I could become a convert.
Angela Gheorghiu is a magnificent, pure, pure talent. A marvelous voice and incredible woman! Love to see and listen her, so, so much.
Angela pure beautiful voice not as well known as the others follow and listen you will be amazed. I would love to see her live.
Wonderful recordings but not so convincing on stage where she seems to lack power.V27 Comments
Brilliant vocalist with personality to match. Always a pleasure to watch her perform.
Beautiful, intelligent singer with a warm mezzo that never ceases to impress and touch me.
Beautiful, clever singer, amazing voice and singing technique!
Just heard her performing in Budapest! No words.. Heavenly..V10 Comments
The best soprano of our time... No one else sounds anything like her... The vibancy, expression, soulfulness, and warm, sincere commitment to the meaning of the moment. I waited all my life to hear the sound she makes and see the performance skills that are at her fingertips. No one else like her now or ever.
Anna Netrebko- gorgeous Russian opera singer with a beautiful voice and great range. Stunningly beautiful vocal.
One of the best, and possibly the best singer of our time!
What distinguishes her from the rest is her incredible energy level which she brings to every performance - both comic and dramatic.
I have 12 songs and would like you to sing oneV24 Comments
Callas was the reason I hated female opera singers - that awful screeching!
Tebaldi's "Oh mio babbino caro" turned me on to female voices.
I cannot believe that Renata Tebaldi is considered #20 on here. She is #1 on my list. I appreciate Callas but cannot believe she is considered the top #1 singer on this list. Her range and pitch is far more superior and I find her voice to me extremely pure and powerful.
Viewing this singer on YouTube is a lesson in bel canto. Watching her facial position and breath are textbook examples for anyone studying classical operatic technique. It is agreed that Renata Tebaldi, Leontyne Price and Rosa Ponselle had the mopst perfectly balanced voices of the twentieth century. They cannot be put on lists. They are in a class all their own.
Best of the bestV13 Comments
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List StatsUpdated 24 Nov 2015
6 years, 243 days old
Top Remixes (14)
2. Joan Sutherland
3. Leontyne Price
2. Sumi Jo
3. Amelita Galli-Curci
2. Carmen Monarcha
3. Montserrat Caballé
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