Thursby, Emma (Cecilia)

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Thursby, Emma (Cecilia)

Thursby, Emma (Cecilia), prominent American soprano; b. Williamsburg, N.Y., Feb. 21, 1845; d. N.Y., July 4, 1931. She was trained in the U.S. and Italy, her principal mentors being Julius Meyer, Achille Errani, Francesco Lamperti, Sangiovanni, and Erminie Ruders-dorff. After beginning her career with solo appearances in churches in Brooklyn and N.Y., she sang with Theodore Thomas and his orch., with Patrick Gilmore and his band, and in Leopold Damrosch’s oratorio concerts. She won extraordinary success touring as a concert singer in Europe (1878-82), then gave concerts and recitals in the U.S. until her farewell in Chicago in 1895. She subsequently was active as a teacher, serving as a prof, at the Inst. of Musical Art in N.Y. (1905-11). Her most celebrated pupil was Geraldine Farrar. Although she declined to appear in operatic productions, she included numerous arias in her concert repertoire, winning acclaim for her coloratura gifts.


R. Gipson, The Life of E. T., 1845-1931 (N.Y, 1940).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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Thursby, Emma (Cecilia)

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