Joan Sutherland


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.

Sutherland is my all-time favorite. Her voice was huge and instantly recognizable for its unique, seamless beauty of tone, range, supreme technique, unparalleled trilling, control and coloring. Not noted for her acting skills (which improved with age, though if I want to see great acting I'll go to a play), she could create drama with her singing alone, and send chills down your spine with her incredible high notes and precise passagework. As much as I admire Callas (Sutherland's only rival), no other soprano voice has ever thrilled me as much as Dame Joan's. Don't agree? Listen to her rare recording of "Santo di Patria" on YouTube: You'll never hear anything to rival it.

Sutherland's voice was powerful, breathtakingly beautiful, and amazingly flexible. Her top register was simply spectacular. Hers was THE voice of the twentieth century. She is unquestionably the greatest soprano in recorded history. Others may have had greater dramatic skills, but their voices cannot be compared with hers.

Simply the most supreme singer I've ever heard.

Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. She is hands down my favorite singer! Another thing I love about Sutherland is you only need to hear her sing 3 notes to know it is her. Such an unique beauty of tone.

Joan Sutherland is the greatest coloratura soprano of all time.

I don't think anyone needs to be the "best" of anything but in variety of repertoire, flawless technique, musicality and consistency, it is hard to beat Sutherland. There are certainly better actresses on the list. It is also hard to compare operatic singing with recital singing. They are totally different artistic expressions. There are so many great sopranos missing from the list such as Ameling. SG

It's impossible to say who was the greatest soprano, but it is not impossible to say who was the greatest bel canto soprano of all time. That is, without question, Dame Joan Sutherland.

She isn't given the title of La Stupenda for nothing. Sutherland is easily the most amazing soprano since they first started recording voices.

Overall, incomparable. Her voice just had a quality that made all others seem lacking. As close to perfect as there has ever been.

Joan Sutherland is the one that everybody is chasing after. She is the queen.

In my opinion, she is the best soprano of our time.

Her name speaks for itself that she is the best. Her so called rival is a screamer. - jimmylovessills

Dame Joan Sutherland was simply the greatest soprano of ALL TIMES! Because if her ability to change her voice range however she resided.
I have hearmany great sopranos sing fabulously but when Dame Sutherland sings you are left SPEECHLESS...

If you take into account she was Australian it is amazing how brilliant she was.

I grow up with her music and as teenager I fall in love with her lovely voice

Maria Callas may have been a better stage performer, but Joan Sutherland could sing circles around Callas. Her voice was HUGE and hearing her live was an unforgettable experience even if she as having an off voice night. Her top notes did not loose power like others they were loud and perfect.

I saw her live later in her career performing one of her last Lucias. She had the score transposed down a tone and did not attempt a Eb6 but rather a Db6 which was stunning for its volume and how long she sustained it.

She should be # 1 in my opinion. She has such a gorgeous voice

She was the voice of 2 centuries, this one and the last one.

She was the greatest and such a nice person

The greatest at what she sang - at her peak.

Brilliant voice! Fantastic technique!

JS sang complete operas ranging from ever in Wagner's Meistersinger, Verdi's Aida to Norma and Lucia. She also sang operettas such as Fledermaus and Merry Widow. She has done numerous recitals and concerts containing art songs, popular songs, and of course demanding operatic arias. Her career lasted some 40 years, with the years from 1959-1989 being the opera world's most admired and in demand soprano. Even after her retirement, Dame JS was able to sing the most difficult coloratura duet from Rossini's Semiramide w Marilyn Horne in a Fledermaus gala given in her honor JS was 64 at the time, and she still upstaged both Pavarotti and Horne to thunderous ovations. Her stupendous dramatic coloratura soprano remains untouchable to this day. She will be remembered as the most stupendous opera singer, perhaps of all time.

Simply the best! No one will ever match the gift that Joan Sutherland was blessed with. Except maybe Idara Aguinaga if she is given a chance to sing before the masses.

There is no word to describe how much this woman has made her a big opera fan. To me, her voice and interpretations of Norma, Lucia, Borgia, Esclarmonde, Beatrice, Semiramide, Sonnambula and Violetta will always be incomparable.

Definitely the greatest soprano of all time. Not just the top ten, the number 1 best of all time.