Tag Archives: Female Black Opera Singers

Tunes x Tuesday: Jessye Norman Edition

Photographer: Carol Friedman

Jessye Mae Norman was born September 15, 1945 in Augusta, Georgia.  I find her to be most intriguing and thoroughly theatrical.  She is the successor to many African-American female opera singers.  Marion Anderson and Leontyne Price come to mind.  Ms. Norman sings in a most glorious soprano that leaves you breathless.  If you want to know more about  her life then click the link.

She is a remarkable woman, activist and philanthropist.  But I must say, she is drama to the INFINITE power!  This woman’s facial expressions are just as dynamic and regal as her voice!  I love how she layers the spiritual, soulfulness of  beauty and pain when she performs.  I don’t need to know what she’s saying to feel her power.

I saw a clip of Ms. Norman performing Ave Maria and that made me think of Beyoncè’s version.  I just want to tell her (in my Judge Mathis voice) to “sit down ma’am and learn a few things from Jessye Norman.

She has since stopped performing in ensemble operas for more intimate recitals and concerts but I couldn’t resist posting this video of her in Julie Taymor’s version of the Oedipus Rex opera. She’s just so dynamic!

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