10 Greatest Sopranos of All Time

In your opinion, who do you think are the ten greatest soprano's of all time?

The Top Ten

1 Joan Sutherland

Joan Sutherland, or La Stupenda as she was called, has the most spectacular voice of all time. Even Pavarotti said she was the voice of the Century. If she had Callas' acting abilities, she would be greater than Callas.
Joan Sutherland's assets include:
1. Huge voice.
2. Breathtakingly beautiful voice when in her prime.
3. Arguably THE perfect trill up to high C.
4. Arguably the best scales and runs.
5. Arguably the best staccato.
6. Definitely the best high notes from high A to high E.

Absolutely, the greatest SINGER of all times... Not just soprano... GREATEST SINGER EVER.
She had one of the most beautiful voice I've ever heard. And I've heard them all. Her voice is HUGE, and she can do anything with it. Her trills rival a flute and you can hear two actual notes spinning very fast. ALL aspects of the art of the coloratura are handled with utter ease and textbook. She has zero rivals as a dramatic coloratura. Her legendary "wall of sound" just surrounds you even in the Hollywood Bowl. She can sing Wagner and Bellini. And when it comes to those notes from C6-E6(high C-high E natural), no one has such brilliance, beauty and gigantic in volume. We will never see the likes of La Stupenda again!
I love Callas but next to Sutherland, even Callas has to take second place.
You MUST hear Sutherland LIVE to hear the real thing. Her voice is that spectacular and HUGE.

Joan Sutherland IS the Absolute First Lady of opera... Prima Donna Assoluta. Honestly, she has the most brilliant voice and breath taking technique of all the great divas in this list.
Even though she may not be the best actress, her phenomenal voice more than make up for it.
She is the Empress of Opera, in my opinion. Thank you.

I have been listening to her magnificent voice for over forty years and all I can say it is uncanny. There are those that would liken her to some of the greatest singers in history but no one has ever been able to reach the stratospheric heights that Dame Joan achieved. She was able to achieve vocal acrobatics with her voice (The Bell Song) that has never been achieved by another singer and her bel canto mastering sets her apart from anyone else that has attempted it except Marilyn Horne. The Golden age of Opera was the period that Sutherland, Horne and Pavarotti sang as an ensemble, never to be matched or duplicated. We were so lucky to hear and see them before Joan and Luciano left us. Thank you for the most incredible music we will ever hear.

2 Jackie Evancho Jacqueline Marie "Jackie" Evancho (born April 9, 2000) is an American classical crossover singer who gained wide recognition at an early age and, since 2009, has issued an EP and seven albums, including a platinum and gold album and three Billboard 200 top 10 debuts. Evancho's 2017 album, Two Hearts, ...read more.

Ok, here is my opinion.
I am not an expert in music or singing, I only know what I feel.
I listen to many female artists from opera to pop.
Jackie's voice has something extra, something that sets it apart from others, regardless of the training and technical perfection reached.
In my opinion, Jackie Evancho has the greatest soprano voice today.

Wikipedia lists three child prodigies of voice: Beverly Sills, Julie Andrews, and Jackie Evancho. Jackie is the youngest person in history to go Platinum. Her career has just begun.

Being a great soprano does not equate being a great opera singer. That's a highly technical specialty. It's a vocal range, and this young lady covers it completely, with a timbre and vibrato (that varies with the piece she's singing) that is more pleasing to my ears than any other singer that I've ever experienced.

Not to take away from any of the other great sopranos past and present, but in my humble opinion, from listening and experiencing those great sopranos and to so many exquisite singers over the past several decades, Jackie Evancho is the one. The drop-to-your-knees in awe and admiration you just know is the best you have ever witnessed. We are so very fortunate to be alive at this time in history as this incredible voice.

3 Montserrat Caballé

Caballe's voice is angelic. Her rendition of O Mio Babino Caro is absolutely flawless and is the best ever recorded - you would have to be a stone not to be moved by it! Other great arias include Ave Maria (Verdi) & Hijo de la Luna. There is not enough words to describe how exquisite her voice really is.

Best high pianos ever...

the voice


4 Birgit Nilsson

Her Wagner was in a class by itself.

Her voice is a laser beam, capable of surpass a big orchestra.

Her voice alone could light up the entire universe.

Second best Wagnerian soprano after Kirsten Flagstad, a remarkable voice.

5 Beverly Sills

Truly a great soprano & as a person. She had a way of singing to your soul in a genuine, sincere way. She portrayed her characters honestly, making them come to life. The ease with which she sang difficult passages was amazing. She could bring even the uneducated opera goer to love opera.

Most unqualified critics never heard Sills early in her career. What a pity! If you readers can, please find the earliest recording of her Baby Doe. Her matchles recording of Julius Caesar also puts her up there in the top five. What a pity she was shunned by the Met for far too long.


I am surprised that many do not recognize Beverly for the magnificent talent she possessed. The things this woman could do with a single scale. Truly a pioneer.

Beverly Sills is my all-time favourite singer. Whether listening to her recordings, singing live or sharing a moment in passing conversation, I admire her singing, her musicality, her characterizations and above all, her humanity. she remains my all-time number one.

6 Leontyne Price

She could sing anything!

Her voice has a extra layer which makes it just that much richer than all others.

Unbelievable voice filled with passion that reached deep into the soul...A true diva

No one was more exciting. No one was more artistic. No one had a more beautiful sound. No one was close.

7 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.

She possessed an unrivaled ability to breath life into the music. Her extraordinary sense of timing, the nuanced treatment of each phrase, and her impassioned delivery find no equal. When you lay aside the traditional criticism and think about what matters most in music, Callas stands alone.

The reason I think maria callas is one of the greatest-if not the greatest-singers is that every time I listen to one her resital I feel so many emotions that I makes me think she cast a spell on me. I know that there might be a lot of good artists but its something about her-about her voice- that makes her special. With her voice she is able to make you understand or even feel some things and I strogly believe that that's the real purpose of every kind of art. To understand and To feel!

I was sitting at Starbucks having a afternoon coffee, listening to Maria Callas, namely La Sonnambula and La Mamma Morta... At one point, I closed my eyes, and nothing else mattered... Her emotional languish along with her superb vocals, transcended me into another place and time... I became overcome with emotion. No one can ever come close to Callas and her artistic renditions of the great classics... BRAVA!

I just don't see how it could be anyone else, Sutherland and Sills were excellent, but no one could touch Callas. She is in a league of her own, a superior league. She is the greatest singer of all time period, with and immense love for her art

8 Kirsten Flagstad

Probaly the best norwegian soprano of all time

Greatest soprano voice of the 20th century. The greatest soprano in Wagner which is the toughest test for any singer.

Greatest soprano of the 20th century without a doubt. The supreme singer of Wagner which is the toughest test for any singer.

The greatest voice of the 20th century.

9 Renata Tebaldi

The most ravishingly beautiful voice ever. Perfect legato, perfect blending of registers and full bodied. Strong lower register, rich middle and dramatic, full top. Also possessed the beautiful pianissimo high notes in her early career. Although the high C became strained in her later career, she reworked her voice into a more dramatic one, with a very strong, mezzo sounding lower register, and Wagnerian weight. If only she had sang more Wagner and continued her career in the 70s as a mezzo (the Met offered her the chance but she declined). Still, the single most beautiful voice I have ever heard.

Incomparable. No other soprano matches her shear vocal beauty.

Tebaldi's voice is the most beautiful sound ever the world has ever known.

My fave. What a rich tone!

10 Jessye Norman

Strong and delicate voice

In my opinion she is number 1 simply the most wonderful voice in my humble opinion.

A singer with a wonderful and powerful voice. Its flexibility is impressive in terms of singing.

Blessed beyond belief...Voice floats like a butterfly

The Contenders

11 Renee Fleming

Renee Fleming is like Mario Lanza and Placido Domingo. She can sing anything and her voice gives me shivers up my spine. Fantastic control and so much feeling in her singing and what a range. I am Australian and feel that Joan Sutherland is not even close to Renee. She should be right at the top of this list

Renee Fleming is in my opinion the best ever. Her control is fantastic and you can feel what she is singing. I have had 4 years of classical training myself and have never heard a soprano like her. Forget Joan Sutherland, you can't even tell what language she is singing in.

Renee fleming beats everyone on this list. You'd have to be deaf not to agree. It's insane she isn't on the top list. By the way, Beverly Sills is recorded singing higher than Joan Sutherland. Sills goes all the way up to F5.

I agree, Fleming is like audible silk. Such control, such a beautiful sound. She sings with ease.

12 Sumi Jo

Her renditions of the bel canto repertoire are really amazing. Her coloratura is very precised and clear. Her rendition of offenbach and lakme are really superb putting her own emotions and colors to every phrase she sings. She is probably one of the best sopranos today.

Her voice is rare and unique among other opera singers who I know.

She has a very clear and delicate voice yet with lots of volume. Her singing technique is superb and engages listeners with the song's emotions.

Her voice is very talented and well trained, so hers can be regarded as the masterpiece instrument of voice: One of the most qualified coloratura in the world now!

13 Angela Gheorghiu

Considered best contemporary voice in the world

Beautiful, delicate, feminine... Great voice and presence!

Mrs. Angela Gheorghiu has both a divine voice and a charming presence. Simple as that!
God bless her mother and father of raising her and all the professors and teachers who make her shine even more!

Mrs Gheorghiu and Mrs. Netrebko should have been way higher on this list!

14 Anna Netrebko Anna Yuryevna Netrebko is a Russian operatic soprano. She holds dual Russian and Austrian citizenships and resides in Vienna, Austria, and in New York City.

Anna Netrebko is up there with the great sopranos. She's got this roch fullness in her voice, the warmth of a mezzo and the register of a coloratura.

Absolutely magnificent

We can still enjoy her

Absolutely brilliant

15 Amira Willighagen Amira Willighagen is a Dutch soprano singer who won the sixth season of Holland's Got Talent in 2013 at the age of 9.

Amira was born with a naturally rich and powerful voice, and through her passion for opera arias at such a young age, she learned to control and use it to deliver a passionate but controlled performance where to use her own words she - 'gets lost' in a song - and take the listener with her in a very emotional but contained manner. At 13 her voice has only begun to mature but already hints of the possibilities of a fully mature exceptionally beautiful voice and her maturing capability to use it promises only further unforgettable performances. Her progress to date is incredible.

Amira has a naturally gifted voice which, together with careful training, is developing into a fine operatic facility. She produces a lovely quality of tone throughout her range, with just sufficient vibrato to colour her notes. So many sopranos use far too much vibrato, in my opinion. Amira is still only 13, but if her voice continues to mature as she grows into adulthood, she could become one of the finest sopranos of all time. I am following her progress with keen interest.

Such a beautiful voice, I never get tired of listening to her. And an engaging personality too. Her first love is still opera music, and she is a hard worker at learning. With a love of putting drama and emotion into her singing, she has great potential (now just 13) for performing in full operas eventually, as well as singing in concerts - which she already does with great success.

This young lady wowed the world when only nine years old. She has since gathered a very solid fan base which is expanding at an incredible rate. All this while she is now only thirteen and wisely insists on enjoying her childhood! All I can say is "We ain't seen nothing yet"...the best is still to come...!

16 Victoria de Los Angeles

WHAT? I can't believe this! Ms De Los Angeles should be at least in 4 place. Who is voting here? I guess young people, who vote famous names and not really good singers...

Deserves to be here. One of the greats, and will never be forgotten.

One of the most even lyric soprano voices. A perfect Marguerite.

She had the best voice. Jesus...17th?

17 Kiri Te Kanawa

I think in terms of vibrato and terms of training she had the best voice. And she also had superb acting skills, but she lacked variety in repertoire and her voice got lighter as she got elder and more frail. But in her hayday amazing.

Listen to her Butterfly!

The most beautiful voice in recording history.

One of the few opera stars who could do crossover well. Listen to her Gershwin album.

18 Luisa Tetrazinni
19 Pumeza Matshikiza
20 Mirella Freni
21 Lucia Popp

If the main thing is beauty of sound and purity of voice, this is THE goddess of singing... She possessed the most beautiful voice ever.

How ridiculous. This lady has to be in the top 3. The other two might be Sutherland and Janowitz. Kiri and Ileana are up there also. Popp is special though - and a real beauty.

Clearest and cleanest voice of them all!

She's the best in my opinion..

22 Angel Blue
23 Edita Gruberova

One of the best voices

The voice. Sheer beauty.

24 Elizabeth Shwarzkopf

The best lyric soprano. The way she give different lives to every word that she sings.

Seriously dude, Jackie Evancho #1, the great Maria Callas #3 and Shwarzkopf 19? I'm dumbfounded...

Number One, hands down!

Her countess almaviva is so mesmerizing and so is her marschallin

25 June Anderson
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