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Ursuleac, Viorica

Ursuleac, Viorica

Ursuleac, Viorica,

noted Romanian soprano; b. Cernãuti, March 26, 1894; d. Ehrwald, Tirol, Oct. 22, 1985. She studied in Vienna with Franz Steiner and Philip Forsten and in Berlin with Lilli Lehmann. She made her operatic debut as Charlotte in Massenet’s Wertherin Agram in 1922; then sang in Cernãuţi (1923-24) and with the Vienna Volksoper (1924-26). In 1926 she joined the Frankfurt am Main Opera, and then pursued a distinguished career as a member of the Vienna State Opera (1930-34), the Berlin State Opera (1935-37), and the Bavarian State Opera in Munich (1937-44). Richard Strauss held her in the highest esteem; in his operas she created the roles of Arabella (Dresden, July 1, 1933), Maria in Der Friedenstag (Munich, July 24, 1938), the Countess in Capriccio (Munich, Oct. 28, 1942), and Danae in Die Liebe der Danae (public dress rehearsal, Salzburg, Aug. 16, 1944). She was also highly successful in the operas of Mozart, Wagner, and Verdi. She was married to Clemens Krauss, with whom she often appeared in concert. After his death in 1954, she settled in Ehrwald. With R. Schlötterer, she wrote Singen für Richard Strauss: Erinnerungen und Dokumente (Vienna, 1986).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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