Forgotten Opera Singers

Forgotten Opera Singers

Mar 3, 2016

Marguerite Namara (Soprano) ( Cleveland, Ohio November 19, 1888 - Marbella, Spain November 5, 1974)

Her real name was Margret Banks. First she studied singing under her mother, then at the Milan Conservatory. In 1908 she made her debut at the Teatro Politeama of Genova as Marguerite in ‘’Faust’’ of C. Gounod. In 1910 she sang in operettas in France, then trained under Jean de Reszke in Paris. As assistant artist she traveled together with Enrico Caruso, Pasquale Amato and Friedrich Kreisler during their tours by all over the world. Temporarily she accompanied famous dancer Isadora Duncan during her tours. She came back again to North America and became here a popular operetta soprano. In 1918 she was engaged by the Chicago Civil Opera, where she appeared till 1922, among other things as Micaela in ‘’Carmen’’, Olga in ‘’Fedora’’, Thaïs and Mimi in ‘’La Bohème’’. She made guest appearances at the Opera of New Orleans. In the 1923-1925 seasons she sang at the Opéra-Comique in Paris the parts of Mimi, Tosca, Thaïs and Violetta. With Manuel de Falla she studied Spanish, with Albert Wolff the French repertoire. In 1927 she was to be heard in America once more as an operetta diva and now came out also as an actress. Also she was active in sound films (‘’Stolen moments’’ with Rudolph Valentino, ‘’Peter Ibbetson’’ with Gary Cooper). In the 1940-1943 seasons she sang operettas at the New York Broadway; in 1944 she appeared in recital at the New Yorker Carnegie Hall by. As a painter she took part several times in exhibitions in America.

Chronology of some appearances

1908 Genova Teatro Politeama Faust (Marguerite)
1918-1922 Chicago Civil Opera
1923-1925 Paris Opéra-Comique


Private recording
Gismonda (Fevrier): Toute blanche 

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