Best Opera Singers

Self evident. Listings of all opera stars, male and female of all vocal ranges who have been heard in person or on recordings. Criterion is voice quality, vocal production (placement and breath control), and artistry (musicianship and understanding of the idiom).

The Top Ten

1 Jonathan Antoine Jonathan Antoine Jonathan Antoine is a classically trained English tenor. He rose to fame after appearing on the sixth series of Britain's Got Talent in 2012 as one half of the classical duo Jonathan and Charlotte.

I've never been more moved by a singer in my life than the Tenor Jonathan Antoine. The first time I heard his voice I was stunned with the most beautiful sounds I have ever heard. I flew to Europe from US to witness his once in a lifetime voice for myself. I have never experienced a more incredible event. He will smash any venue with a frenzy of emotional delight, he is an experience of a lifetime. He has opened the doors of opera for all.

Never fallen in love with a voice so much until I discovered this Golden Voiced young British Tenor! Unlike any other Tenor out there he has a unique velvety creamy tone & brings such JOY PASSION & POWER to every song-Although Still very young and at the beginning of his journey- he has been tipped to be THE Tenor of the 21st Century- I can only concur with this vie and so hope he chooses a path in Opera as well as Classical Crossover as I see him converting a new young audience to Opera!

There have been and are some amazing tenors but none can compare to the effortless vocals of Jonathan Antoine. He is only 22 years old and already on the road to stardom. There are many hurdles for him to negotiate before it is recognised that he truly is world class and one day he will grace the most famous stages and people will listen in awe to his magnificent voice. He already has two number 1 albums; Tenore and Believe and if you haven't heard either of them you should, you really should.

Never before has a voice touched me so deeply as that of Jonathan Antoine. - WienElisabeth

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2 Luciano Pavarotti Luciano Pavarotti Luciano Pavarotti, Cavaliere di Gran Croce was an Italian operatic tenor who also crossed over into popular music, eventually becoming one of the most commercially successful tenors of all time.

Surely the great pavarotti is better than caruso!

Luciano Pavarotti wasn't a beginner, he ruled the operatic world during his lifetime & his GLORIOUS OPERATIC VOICE continues to enthrall people all over the world.

Oh for goodness sake! No other singer, dead of alive, young or old, has the MAGNIFICENT OPERATIC VOICE of the MIGHTY LUCIANO PAVAROTTI!

Best opera singer OF ALL TIME!

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3 Kirsten Flagstad

Norwegian...enough! - torsja29

The greatest of Wagnerian sopranos, generally recognized as without peer. The voice had great beauty and power as befits the need of the idiom. - acchione

4 Enrico Caruso Enrico Caruso

Likely the greatest male voice of all time, although only primitive recordings exist from his era. Definitely the ONLY person for whom a credible argument can be made that he is greater than Pavarotti.

While the quality of sound limits the ability to judge beauty, this is the best produced and most powerful of voices. Listen, for example to Nina. No one else can sing like this. Remember that when he auditioned for Mascagni, the later said "Who sent you to me - God? " - acchione

5 Andrea Bocelli Andrea Bocelli Andrea Bocelli, OMRI, OMDSM is an Italian classical crossover tenor, recording artist, and singer-songwriter. Born with poor eyesight, he became permanently blind at the age of 12 following a football accident. V 2 Comments
6 Maria Callas Maria Callas Maria Callas, Commendatore OMRI, was a Greek-American soprano, and one of the most renowned and influential opera singers of the 20th century. Many critics praised her bel canto technique, wide-ranging voice and dramatic interpretations. V 2 Comments
7 Joan Sutherland

She should be at the top of this list. She was voted #1 in TheTopTens' "10 greatest sopranos" and #2 in TheTopTens' "10 best female opera singer". She is the Queen of Opera.

Dame Joan should be at the top of the list.

Joan Sutherland should be at the top of the list by far!

The author of this post decides on who he/she wants to be the best. Don't bother to vote. Your vote won't count.

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8 Ezio Pinza

The most distinctive of voices, Pinza was the ultimate cantabile basso. His Don Giovanni is legendary. A great natural talent who never study singing and was at home in all opera (and Broadway - S. Pacific). He made his debut at the Met singing Boris Godunov in Italian (the other principles sang in French, the chorus in Russian) - acchione

9 Beniamino Gigli

The most beautiful voice. While lacking the weight and power of the Caruso voice, his singing was sensuous and seductive. Before his voice changed, he was acclaimed for his singing of Norma! - acchione

10 Rosa Ponselle

Like Caruso, her recordings do not allow us to hear the full quality of her voice - but there is no question of her musicianship or quality and power of voice. Clearly the greatest of Italian sopranos against whom all others are measured - acchione

The Contenders

11 Feodor Chaliapin

What few recordings exist demonstrate the greatest of singing actors.
The "greatest recordings of the century disc" shows a phenomenal portrayal of Boris. - acchione

12 Plácido Domingo

Again, a great voice and most versatile of all.

13 Aria Tesolin
14 Ebe Stignani

The great Mezzo Soprano's greatness can be heard in the Norma duet and the recording of the Verdi Requiem with Gigli and Pinza. - acchione

15 Fritz Wunderlich
16 Leonard Warren

Our great baritone is without peer among many many great baritones.
When he auditioned at the Met. One of the judges wanted to disqualify him because he thought he was mouthing a recoding of a great singer - he could not believe his ears. He died on stage at 48 years old signing Forza del Destino. - acchione

17 Leontyne Price

She has the best voice, ever!

18 Dame Janet Baker

The UK system produces a large number of great musicians.
After the incomparable horn player, Denis Brain, she is the best.
Listen especially to the Elgar "Sea Songs" and Taube's song in the Schoenberg "Gurre Lieder" - acchione

19 Jussi Bjoerling

While perhaps Domingo belongs here, Bjoerling is a greater musician with a better voice. There exists a wonderful recording of him singing as a boy. The clincher is his recording of Lensky's aria from Onegin. - acchione

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20 Mario Lanza Mario Lanza
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List Stats

400 votes
63 listings
4 years, 352 days old

Top Remixes (6)

1. Andrea Bocelli
2. Maria Callas
3. Joan Sutherland
1. Enrico Caruso
2. Kirsten Flagstad
3. Ezio Pinza
1. Joan Sutherland
2. Renata Tebaldi
3. Mario Lanza

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