Gunther, Mizzi, greatly talented Austrian soprano; b. Warnsdorf, Feb. 8, 1879; d. Vienna, March 18, 1961. After appearances in provincial theaters, she settled in Vienna and first gained attention as O Mimosa San in Die Geisha in 1901. Later that year she had her first starring role as Lotti in Die drei Wunsche at the Carltheater, then had her first great success as Lola Winter there in Das stisse Madel. She joined the Theater an der Wien in 1905 singing Jessie in Vergeltsgott. On Dec. 30, 1905, she created the role of Hanna Glawari in Lehar’s Die lustige Witive, and thereafter was recognized as one of the leading operetta stars of her era. She went on to appear to great acclaim as Alice in Die Dollarprinzessin (1907) and as Lori in Der Mann mil den drei Frauen(1908). In 1909 she became a member of the Johann Strauss-Theater, where she created the role of Mary Ann in Lehar’s Das Furstenkind. In 1911 she rejoined the Theater an der Wien and created the title role in Lehar’s Eva. After again appearing at the Johann Strauss-Theater (from 1915), she once more sang at the Theater an der Wien (from 1919), where she created the role of Katja in Katja, die Tanzerin (1923). In subsequent years, she concentrated on character roles. She later appeared at the Raimundtheater and the Volksoper. As late as 1948 she was seen on the Vienna stage, marking some 50 years in the musical theater.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire