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Robinson, Anastasia

Robinson, Anastasia

Robinson, Anastasia , English soprano, later contralto; b. in Italy, c. 1692; d. Southampton, April 1755. She was the daughter of the portrait painter Thomas Robinson. After studying music with Croft and singing with Sandoni and Lindelheim, she began her career singing in private concerts at her father’s home in London. Handel wrote the soprano part of his Ode for Queen Anne’s Birthday (1714) for her and she made her operatic debut with his company in London in the pasticcio Creso on Jan. 27, 1714. She subsequently sang in several of Handel’s operas, creating the role of Oriana in his Amadigi di Gaula on May 25, 1715. After his company was disbanded in 1717, she turned to contralto roles and appeared at London’s Drury Lane in 1719–20. She then was a member of Handel’s Royal Academy of Music (1720–24), where she created the roles of Elmira in Fiondante (Dec. 9, 1721), Matilda in Ottone, Ré di Germania (Jan. 12, 1723), Teodata in Flavio, Ré di Longobardi (May 14, 1723), and Cornelia in Giulio Cesare in Egitto (Feb. 20, 1724). In 1724 she retired from the stage and married the Earl of Peterborough, who did not publicly acknowledge their marriage until 1735.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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