Date: 7/3/2007, 9:11 pm, EDT
Name: R. Y. Davis
Location: Bronx, NY
Super, Sensational Sills
Date: 7/3/2007, 9:09 pm, EDT
Name: Sydney Boultwood
Location: San Francisco.
Such a wonderful voice...such a tragic loss!
Date: 7/3/2007, 9:03 pm, EDT
Name: Nancy Miller
Location: Malden, Massachusetts
I was in disbelief and extremely saddened this evening to hear of the passing of our great opera diva, Beverly Sills. She has always inspired me and imbued me with the love of opera. She made it seem approachable, never rarified; it was for you and me to enjoy this fine jewel-like music, as she offered it to us. Her superb voice will continue to be heard throughout the generations, thus she will never "die", but live on through her operatic recordings which will always be listened to with profound appreciation for the beauty of her gift to all of us. My sincerest condolences are extended to her family. May she always be remembered by us for her great talent and superb voice. Rest in Peace, my dear one.
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:37 pm, EDT
Name: Philip Chamberlain
Location: Oakland, CA
We had the pleasure of weeing Ms. Sills as "The Daughter of the Regiment" at the San Francisco Opera back in the eighties.
What a voice !!
What a stage personality !!
I have every recording she ever made and listen to them often. Thank you, Bubbles.
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:30 pm, EDT
for those who didn't get to hear and see beverly sills' lucia, violetta, marie, manon, three queens, and even her boston or newark normas you only have a vague sense from recordings and from videos how uniquely great an artist the nyc opera was blessed with the sound of the sills voice in the house soaredd and floated and had silvery overtones that quite literally caused goosebumps. her coloratura was so clean, easy, glowing up to the d's, and e flats that i'm convicned she stood alone in this respect. and to watch sills seem to hold her entire jaw around a floating pianissimo and then seem to hold it there for seconds as she played with and sculpted the dramatic and emotional intensity of the tone was to be consumed by her vocal and dramatic art
I saw sills do 19 roberto devereauxs, 15 lucias, half a dozen manons, cleopatras, maires, rosinas, traviatas, because i knew then, what i can report 40 years later, i would never again expreince an artist who mixed such stunning vocal technique, phrasing, and acting.
Perhaps its is natural that most of the world knew her as the television personality she was too. or the great arts adminstrator, fundraiser and advocate she became after she stopped singing. but, for me, the real beverly sills, was the great lyric soprano of the second half of the 20th century whose vocal and acting gifts earned her a remarkable place as one of the greatest singers in the histoy of opera.
When she stopped singing, the opera world lost one of its great divas., yesterday we all lost the great lady herself. my condolences to her daugher and son and the children she shared with peter greenough and to her entire family. and to edgar vincent.
I hope that the met and the city opera will combine forces to hold a public memorial for the great singer and great lady and give her public, all her assoicates and her family and freinds a very fitting public chance to say goodbye.
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:29 pm, EDT
Name: Catherine Breheny
Location: St.Petersburg, FL
I will never forget the beautiful voice that taught me the love of opera! Thank you, Miss Sills
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:24 pm, EDT
Location: Teterboro Airport, Teterboro, New Jersey
To the family and friends of Ms. Sills, my sincerest and heartfelt condolences. To the "fans" of Ms. Sills, although she is gone, her flame (voice) will linger always.
I had the extreme pleasure of meeting Ms. Sills at Teterboro Airport, where I work, on numerous occassions. Always pleasant, friendly and approachable no matter the time of day or circumstances. She would always take the time to ask how I was but would always inquire about my family.
She was asked about her "happiness". She responded by saying "it's not happiness but cheeriness" there is a difference. For the gift she had been given of a truly beautiful voice, capable of touching millions, she was given the burden of a hearing disabled daughter, an autistic son, an early bout with cancer, alzheimer disease claiming her husband and then this last and fatal bout with cancer. There is an old saying that "God never gives you more than you can handle". Perhaps this was the "trade off" for her gift and her fame.
May you now find eternal peace and freedom from the burdens that you encountered in this life and know that you made "a difference" in so many ways in so many lives with not only your singing voice, but your voice for all those who could not speak for themselves (MS, March of Dimes, Cancer, etc.)
You will be sorely missed......
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:12 pm, EDT
Name: lia ponte
Location: fall river massachusetts
I heard the astounding voice of Beverly Sills at the age of 16 in 1986. I was a heavy-gawky freshman in a parochial high school with dreams of being an opera star. The other kids would make fun of me but all I cared about was being able to sing half as good as she someday. I always loved to sing and was begining my operatic training. My voice teacher suggested I listen to some arias sung by this coloratura soprano named-Beverly Sills. I was given her cd of operatic arias and was hooked!-her ability to control the note and make it mesmerizing blew me away.
Throughout my years of training and auditioning I always used her as a learning tool for my art- Shortly after I hurt my voice in 1992 and could no longer train and audition I continued to be inspired by her. When all the teenagers were listening to heavy metal and such I was listening to "Bubbles"-the opera superstar-she will forever be an icon of inspiration to those who dream of a career on the opera stage and her "bell-like" voice provides comfort to those who just appreciate the arts. She will be greatly and sadly missed-the world has lost a genius of great talent and remarkable human being. Gone-but never forgotten.
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:11 pm, EDT
Location: st. louis
Brava Miss Sills-You left the world a more beautiful place than it was when you entered it. Your final gift to the world is your courage and your recordings that are left behind to remind us that there was one Sills and there will never be another.
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:10 pm, EDT
Name: Anne Haffey
Location: Stamford, Connecticut
I first heard Beverly Sills sing on a PBS program, "Who's Afraid of Opera" back in the early seventies. She not only took all the mystery out of loving opera for me, but when she sang I was speechless. I have seen her perform many times and it is because of her I developed my love of opera.
Brava!! Bubbles. Go sing with the angels.
Date: 7/3/2007, 8:08 pm, EDT
Location: Irvine, California
To listen to Beverly Sills was always very special for me. Her singing always brought me to a beautiful place. We are all blessed to have had this wonderful woman live in our time. I will miss her terribly.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:53 pm, EDT
Name: Erik Buck Townsend
Location: Modesto, California
Having heard Beverly Sills as a newcomer to NY in 1965, I enjoyed her performance in Coque D'Or immensely. Later as an artist at City Opera standing in the wings as she sang the three queens from Donizetti's operas was an unforgettable experience.
In 1972, I was on the SFO roster as a tenor, and was privileged to attend many of Miss Sills rehearsals in Lucia di Lammermoor, in which she sang sotto voce extremely well. When it came to singing final dress, she sang out fully, but was obviously in a bit of vocal trouble. Going backstage during intermission, I saw her standing in the shadows by some scenery looking sad. Thinking to cheer her up, I smiled and said, "Great job, Diva," at which she turned her earnest gaze upon me and replied,"You know better." What a lady. There will never be another like her.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:51 pm, EDT
Sills was always the opera star I heard of as a kid, even when I wasn't at all into opera. Her sheer presence and happy-go-lucky personality always made me take notice of her. She to me was the epitome of a true opera super star. I not sure if there will be another time in history where an opera star can do prime time specials like she did with Carol Burnett, or substitute for a popular night time talk show host, like she did with Johnny Carson. Her biographies were almost like bibles to me, for I read and re-read them (still do on occassion) over and over again. I learned so much about opera just from reading them, and I simply loved the little ancedotes she wrote about. It felt like I was having a private conversation with her. Her sheer talent was one thing, but the confident, positive approach she brought to her music always made stand out above the rest, to me. She would be greatly missed. Her contribution to classical music and getting a inner city kid like me to take notice is exceptional.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:49 pm, EDT
Name: Mac Harris
Location: Warrior, Alabama
What an incredible woman, glorious voice and impeccable artistry. Beverly, well done and thank you.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:28 pm, EDT
Name: Mario Gorga
Location: Melbourne Australia
When I was a teenager I did have a pin up girl her name was Beverly Sills and when all my friends were listening to The Beatles out of my room came the sound of incedible coloraturas from 'Bubbles' voice. You were responsible for my great love and admiration to the Bel Canto and my passion for the world of Opera .
My biggest regret I never saw you live. I shall miss you very much,it is like a bit of my past is now no longer with me.
Rest in peace my Dearest Lady.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:25 pm, EDT
Name: Dr. Jonathan Briggs
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
I remember hearing Beverly's voice for the first time when I was only sixteen, back in Connecticut, when I purchased my first opera, "Don Pasquale." She was singing with Donald Gramm, Alan Titus, and my favorite, Alfredo Kraus, under the baton of Ms. Sarah Caldwell. I was hooked! And when I mentioned it to my mother, she told me,
"You're not going to believe this, but Beverly Sills lived in the same apartment building as your father and I in New York, right after we were first married!" I asked her, "Did you get her autograph?" My mother answered, "No, dear, I didn't.
She was so good when she sang, though, and I loved listening to her voice as a very young girl all day long when she was rehearsing." Gosh, what an opportunity! I have always loved the veritable incandescent quality, the sparkling verve, the true excitement of Ms. Sills' voice, and I shall always remember her telling stories of how she used to sit backstage eating cookies and drinking milk between scenes during her performances (a true no-no for a singer, for sure!).
I have always loved and respected her as a consumate performer and a professional, and it is a true tragedy that we have lost an American icon of incredible talent and grace on stage, as well as off. I shall miss her, for sure, and I shall always treasure that first time I felt transported by her voice in "Don Pasquale", or her incredible artistry in "Maria Stuarda" or her dramatic ability in "Guilio Cesare", singing opposite Norman Treigle. What a wonderful experience it has been for all of us, and she will always be remembered as a true lady, a fantastic performer, and an inspired artist who made us all feel as though we were part of her experience.
Thank you, Beverly, for introducing a young kid to the world of opera. My love affair for it has never waned, and I shall treasure memories of you for years to come!
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:24 pm, EDT
Location: Las Vegas,NV
Ms Sills brought culture and hospitality to an otherwise inhospitible world....she will be missed.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:23 pm, EDT
Name: bruce gordon
Location: Seattle, USA
I am going to miss her terribly. She was an immense influence on me as a performer and musician. I listened to her today while blowing bubbles from my front porch. Her jewel like tones, her trills and breath control made her one of the best coloraturas the world has ever heard, bar none. She was a warm and inviting personality and a strong woman. Goodbye, mon trèsor.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:21 pm, EDT
Name: Betty Grenda
Location: Mt. Prospect, Illinois
God blessed this wonderful woman with a glorious voice, but far more than that, He blessed her with the the gift of being able to fill this old world with warmth, love, happiness and beauty. May she sing forever in heaven. She will be dearly missed here on earth.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:03 pm, EDT
Name: ariane csonka
Location: W. Palm Beach, FL
I remember personally the champagne "bubbles" of Sill's voice and personality. She was the most generous of artists, and Palm Beach owes her a huge debt for singing here when the company was struggling, and giving us validity. She set an example I'll never forget, of taking whatever cruelties life dealt her with courage, kindness and that marvellous sense of humor. She sings now with the angels -- I hope her beloved daughter can hear her at last. Thank you, Beverly, for gracing us all -- may you rest, not in peace, but in the joy you shared with us all.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:02 pm, EDT
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
I grew up on Miss Sills' recordings when I was growing up in Tehran, Iran. When I moved to America in 1977, I became aware of her warm personality through her TV appearances. Her first autobiography was the first book I purchased after moving to The United States. I truly feel that a part of my youth has died with her. I will never forget the warmth and the humanity that she communicated to me through her singing. I am also in awe of her advocay for the arts and her tireless energy. It is really the end of an era.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:01 pm, EDT
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
Goodbye Sister Sills. May you lie in roses for all eternity.
Date: 7/3/2007, 7:01 pm, EDT
Name: Gayle Gerard
The reason I became interested in opera was due to my exposure to Beverly Sills. Her many television appearances and her incredible stage presence were mesmerizing. I will always remember the smile and the voice...both were sparkling, magical and totally original. The world has not really lost her. Her recordings will keep her alive in our hearts forever.
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:56 pm, EDT
Name: Mary Midani
Location: Houston, Texas 77063
I would just like to post my fondest regards for this wonderfully talented lady that always had a warm smile and a beautiful enthusiasm for life. She will be missed so dearly. What an inspiration for the young people.
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:56 pm, EDT
Name: Tony Converse
Location: New York city
Having had the privilege of working with Beverly several times in her " TV Incarnations " I mourn her passing.
An extraordinary artist. an extraordinary woman.
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:50 pm, EDT
Location: Gary, Indiana
Beverly Sills is responsible for turning a 13 year African American kid who grew up with motown to an opera lover and CD collector. From then on, I played the Cello. I now have a large classical music collection with many of Beverly Sill's operas.
Thank you, Mrs. Sills
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:39 pm, EDT
Name: Susan Deutschle
Location: Columbus, OH
I grew up watching Beverly Sills on TV and was always touched by her warm, gracious personality. She had a high-society demeanor with a down-to-earth approachibility. She just seemed really nice! Now that I know more about the personal challenges she faced throughout her life, I admire her even more. May God bless Beverly Sills.
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:33 pm, EDT
Name: MARJORIE MADONNE
Location: Lafayette, California
I saw Beverly in San Francisco a number of times, and she was always wonderful. I especially remember her Manon, with Nicolai Gedda. The dream cast. But she was more than a singer. She was a great lady. I met her a couple of times in person. What warmth and sincerity. I cannot believe she's gone. But she's really not gone at all. She lives in our hearts, and we have her music.
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:33 pm, EDT
Name: Juan Solis
Location: San Diego , CA 92104
My mother and I are saddened by the loss of this Great Opera Star an american Icon of Music at its best A Grande Dame in every sense
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:29 pm, EDT
Name: Betty Kelton Howell
I am sincerely grief stricken. Your song will forever be in our hearts!!!!!!
Date: 7/3/2007, 6:28 pm, EDT
Name: Susan Morton
Location: Bridgewater, Nova Scotia Canada
I never saw Beverly Sills in performance but I enjoyed listening to her recordings. I especially enjoyed hearing her speak and reading her autobiography which I still refer to when I have a question about opera or life.
This past year I was so pleased to hear Miss Sills as co-host at Saturday afternoon at the Met.
She was something else.
Thank you Beverly Sills.
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:59 pm, EDT
Name: CATANIA ROBERT
thank you BEVERLEY we love you,thank you for the hapiness that you gives us
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:57 pm, EDT
Name: Eduardo Corredera
What can one add to all the heart-felt previous messages? Beverly was truly a one-of-a-kind soprano who will always be remembered not only for her spectacular coloratura fireworks but also for her inimitable style and acting ability. She was one of the best singing actresses the world has ever known. Add to that a bubbly personality with an infectious laugh and you get the miracle we lovingly call Bev, who will for ever be in our hearts. May she rest in peace, La Fenomena! What a tragic loss for the opera world and for us her fans. Luckily, we still have her records and videos, which will always be such a source of joy.
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:57 pm, EDT
Name: Maria DeVita-Krug
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
I had the honor of meeting Miss Sills backstage at NYC Opera many years ago. As a young singer, I was stunned and awestruck to meet my idol quite by accident. Miss Sills was gracious, kind, and obliging to my awkward attempts to tell her how much I admired her. I still have the cloth bag she signed for me. It still holds my Carmen score that she thumbed through to see what I was working on. A truly beautiful woman, she will be missed. Brava Miss Sills! You have done well. The applause in Heaven must be overwhelming...
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:28 pm, EDT
Name: Richard Beeson
Location: New York City
How she'll be missed. I had the privilege of working with her at City Opera from 1966 until she left for other pastures in 1989; but even then we maintained contact. I was in the orchestra originally, until she appointed me to the job of orchestra manager. I have so many memories of her, it's impossible to count them all. But my favorite is surely the performances of Julius Caesar, when I was directly under her in the pit while she sang "v'adoro, pupille." I didn't have to play during most of the number, so I could soak in the sound and the artistry pouring out of this amazing person standing a few feet away. I'll never forget it.
Yesterday I wrote a get-well card, to be mailed this morning. Last night I saw the awful news just after midnight. I'm devastated. As one of our mutual friends just said, "there's no more sun in the sky."
I sent the card anyway today; Muffy, I hope it reaches you.
Love, Richard (joined by my wife Elli)
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:25 pm, EDT
Location: Paris - France
Beverly was the most fantastic personn I ever knew in my life.
I spent 14 years with the composer Olivier Messiaen. Both Messiaen and Sills were the two more important artists.
This is very strange, my mother is a sosie of Beverly, almost same age.
Yesterday when a friend called me to say "Beverly is done", that was a terrific new. If anyone has some good recent pics of her, please send me some. I cannot fly to New York for funeral.
Kiss her family for me
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:22 pm, EDT
My comments are about Beverly Sills, the woman, not the opera singer. She was from my mother's generation. I wasn't in to opera, but saw her on the Carson show, with Carol Burnett and other entertainment shows. I knew she was a successful professional singer but her personality and intelligence came thru so strongly, I always saw her as a person. "Man plans and God laughs", she once said. She didn't consider herself a happy person but was determined to make the best of life. I last saw her on the View with Barbara Walters. Beverly made an exception to come on the show on Best Friends Week. She appeared healthy, down to earth, wise, with with wit and humour. She made declarative statements in a conversational way. I had the impression she was hard on herself, requiring herself to be successful in all she did. There is a network of these women that are too soon fading away.
I realized Barbara Walters, Beverly Sills, my mother, Judy Judy are all alot alike. Women who are reasonable, intelligent, and who let logic guide them when their emotions are tested. They are women who had a handle on how hard life could be, and they handled it with humor, wit, sacrifice and intelligence. They did it all with apparent confidence. If you ask them, they didn't feel as confident as we perceive them to be, but once they made a decision, they were dedicated to doing their best and required it of themselves.
Very rarely are these type of women wishy washy on important, complicated issues. They know themselves and they know where they stand and they can stand up to anyone and hold their own. I see very few of these type of women left and I will miss their strength and the example they set. I know each generation has their strong points, but these women took the values of yesteryear and brought them into the career field and did it successfully. They where still true to themselves and the old fashioned values while being progressive in their thoughts and actions. There is a strength of character and a level of courage in these older women I don't see in myself or my peers. I am saddened one more has left us. This type of woman built a bridge for "us modern women" to travel on and to succeed. Modern women have their own successes in their own right.
I am giving a tribute to these older woman that built the bridge we walk on today. thanks to them and God Bless them.
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:22 pm, EDT
quando ti ho incontrata in un palco, al ROF, Rossini Opera Festival, mi hai stretto la mano e io...non volevo più lavarla! per non perdere il tuo ricordo. Ti ho detto che, purtroppo, non avevo fatto in tempo ad ascoltarti dal vivo e tu, con suprema ironia mi hai risporto con la frase finale de I PAGLIACCI: "La commedia è finita".
Sei stata una GRANDISSIMA...e resterai sempre nel mio cuore...
Grazie per tutte le emozioni che mi hai regalato.
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:18 pm, EDT
Beverly Sills was our "rock star," when I was in high school. Our choir director would play her recordings full blast, on the choir room stereo. We'd practically swoon to her coloratura. She was the consumate musician. I will always love her voice and be grateful for the one occasion I was able to see her in person. She was a beautiful woman. She will be missed.
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:07 pm, EDT
Name: Gaby Kretsch
Thanks for the memories, the bravado and your New York Jewish pride and talent. When I came to the USA in 1971 from Eastern Europe my relatives talked about you like if you were a niece or someone who had it all. Your beautiful voice, your talent to act, your business sense and humanity made you the darling of the greatest City of the world.
Rest in Peace, God bless you Miss Sills!
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:05 pm, EDT
Name: Peter Kraft
Location: Hartford, CT
As utterly sad as it was to read of Beverly Sills' passing this morning, I can only think how unbelievably wonderful Heaven is going to be! Beverly Sills is now waiting for us along with the pantheon of great artists that have gone before her. What concerts and operas and recitals await us! I'm certain Beverly is singing one of her great roles even now -- BRAVA DIVA!!
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:05 pm, EDT
Name: Leona Imperatore
Location: New Jersey
How fortunate I was to have lived during the triumphal years of Beverly Sills career. Fortunate, indeed, to have a marvelous teacher in Philadelphia who helped me to come to know of Beverly, her marvelous voice, ability, talent, and to also learn of and understand Bel Canto singing.
One of the greatest gifts in my life other than knowing my Lord and Saviour Jesus, was hearing and seeing Beverly in person.
What a talent she had, what a joy she was, what a marvelous ambassador; not only for Opera, voice and the arts, but also for America. Her smile, joy and personality exuded love to all who heard or saw her.
She contributed so very much to the world in so very many ways; we are blessed to have had her here with us...........though she endured so very much heartache and personal pain...... no one would ever have known..........she always kept the smile, had the joy and passed on her legacy to anyone and everyone possible for years and years.
I remember she once said she wore a pinky ring that had the inscription "I've already done that". Yes, she did, she did it all! And blessed everyone in the bargain :) .
Today when I learned that our beautiful, Beverly "Bubbles" was gone from us here on earth, I was very saddened because I knew the world would no longer witness that beautiful smile and be exposed to her loving, joyful countenance.
How we will miss you Beverly. I pray you now sing with His heavenly angels in a far, far better place...receiving many rewards from Our Heavenly Father.
Date: 7/3/2007, 5:03 pm, EDT
Name: Jim Williams
Location: Albuquerque NM
Thanks for everything you gave us through your wonderful voice. You will continue to be an inspiration to everyone through your music and amazing voice. Much love and go on in peace!
Date: 7/3/2007, 4:59 pm, EDT
Name: Lance Cook
Location: Walnut Cove,NC
I had the extreme pleasure of seeing Beverly Sills in 1977 in NYC. It is a memory I will cherish forever! The angel choir has a new lead Soprano!! Thank you for bringing such beautiful music to the world!
Date: 7/3/2007, 4:55 pm, EDT
Miss Sills introduced me to the great bel canto trilogy of the Queens by Donizetti and I remember the pleasure and the excitment when I found those Lps in a specialized record shop in Paris, near les grands boulevards. Thank you for the pleasure you brought to the opera lovers all over the world, you'll remain alive thanks to your recordings. May you rest in peace, God bless you.
Date: 7/3/2007, 4:52 pm, EDT
Name: David Tidyman
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
To Glorious Beverly!
So many of us can recount many a performace. I want to personally thak you for being the great bearer of the torch that naturally infused palpable emotion and passion into every single note you sang from the 'inside out.' You are a lesson to all! I must admit the coloratura was perhaps the most sensational on the planet, but I have to add that when I heard you sing 'Breit uber Mein Haupt' of Richard Strauss, the sensitivity, love and poetry that you sang with changed my life forever. Of course you were the greatest Manon, Elisabeth, Violetta and countless others! How did you manage to bring the utter joy of singing from the lyric boards to the hearts of millions?
As a choral conductor and organist you inspired my entire adult career, and you even took time to hand address and respond to my congratulatory notes over the years. They will hang on my walls along with all of your roles signed by you to me as a living memorial to you and my family! You will never be forgotten.
A final 'Brava' to you Beverly!
With love and admiration to you and your family,
David Alan Tidyman
Date: 7/3/2007, 4:47 pm, EDT
Name: Ray Fox
I had the great pleasure of first hearing Ms Sills sing at Wolf Trap Farm Park, outside Washington, D.C., over thirty years ago. What a delightful presence on stage she was! I also treasure an old cassette tape I made in my college days of Ms Sills performing one of Cleopatra's arias in "Julius Caesar." I like to imagine that Handel would have adored her, too. Thank you, Bubbles!
Date: 7/3/2007, 4:39 pm, EDT
Name: yvonne mendy
Location: saratoga, ca 95070
I didn't like opera as a kid. My war bride mom only listened to opera or country western on the radio as I grew up (She said they both had pathos as well as down to your gut happiness.) She could only afford to take each of us three daughters to one opera; she picked which girl each year. I was oldest, so I went first. I "suffered" thru TV appearances featuring arias (by the best, as I now realize). One of Mom's favs was Beverly Sills, and I never really knew why until I saw her (with Mom) on Johnny Carson...more than once. I know she was kinda past her prime, and then I kept seeing her and her name connected with good work with the Met. She was a constant advocate of opera--I still didn't care that much, but she was becoming to me one of the smilingest people on TV, always so happy and enjoyable, whether opera was your thing or not.
She got me more and more curious, just being so happy about her career and being praised constantly, by Johnny Carson (who I think was not much of an opera fan). I thought comedians made fun of them, and that was why she was originally invited. Well, she could banter with him head to head; she usually won, in my mind (of course, I now know he was a good straight man.). Anyway, I began to always cheer for her when she appeared; then I began checking more into the opera world; finally, thinking I could only hope to show the enthusiasm for it that Beverly Sills exuded.
When I think of opera today, I think of her first, my long-distance mentor, cheer leader, if you will. I've even taken an opera history course, and cheer lead happily for my local opera company in San Jose, lovingly under the leadership of former Met star, Irene Dallas (Her real name is the same as mine, Yvonne!). I am gratified to know that opera is a rising entertainment once again, at least on the west coast. Beverly Sills, you are still my star, tho' I am less familiar with your singing than with your most appealing smile and positive advocacy for all things opera. I will never forget her, and continue to attend and learn more and more about her love.
Date: 7/3/2007, 4:39 pm, EDT
Name: Joan M. Doyle
Location: Clermont, FL
As a native of New Jersey, I often saw the "I Love NY" ads featuring Ms. Sills. She was a familiar face with an incredible voice. Unfortunately, she retired from performing before I had an opportunity to hear her. But I certainly remember her influence on the arts!
Beverly the whole world, mourns your loss. May God wrap his arms around you and make you the lead in HIS mighty opera.
Date: 7/3/2007, 4:29 pm, EDT
Name: Frank Blees (bass-baritone)
What a great loss for the opera world! I never had the possibility to see her on stage but I know and love a lot of her legacy in audio and video. Her naturalness and virtuosity in singing was unique and exemplary! Thank you, Beverly Sills, and condolence to her family and friends!