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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Opera star Dame Joan Sutherland dead

Dame JoanOpera star Dame Joan Sutherland dies aged 83.

Dame Joan Sutherland, one of the greatest operatic sopranos of the 20th Century, has died in Switzerland at 83.

The Australian star, who retired from the stage 20 years ago, had been in poor health following a fall.

Dame Joan made her debut at London's Covent Garden in 1952, going on to appear in productions around the world and making numerous recordings.

Her family said in a statement: "She's had a long life and gave a lot of pleasure to a lot of people."

''She's a very important person all over the world, but for us this is our family and we're just trying to come to terms with this,'' said Dame Joan's daughter-in-law Helen.

The singer performed with other greats during her career, including Luciano Pavarotti, who described her as having "the voice of the century".

Pavarotti toured with her in Australia during the 1960s when he was a young man.

Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballe once said that the singer's voice was "like heaven".

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