Ellen MacDonald-Kramer is a Canadian writer and opera historian based in London, UK. She completed her MA degree in musicology at Toronto’s York University, where she also studied voice with renowned mezzo-soprano Catherine Robbin. The castrati are Ellen’s research specialty, but she has many interests and enjoys mixing disciplines (for example, she has studied the character of the opera singer in classic literature). In addition to articles and reviews, she writes fiction and currently has a novel manuscript in circulation.
Of the few opera singers to appear in classic literature, Thea Kronborg is arguably the most humanly memorable.
Maria Malibran and Pauline Viardot…. Separated by thirteen years and infinitely different natures, they were daughters of the noted tenor and voice teacher Manuel Garcia.
Modern opera enthusiasts may sneer at the likes of Jackie Evancho, that irritatingly angelic ‘popera’ sensation… It may come as a surprise, then, that this wasn’t the case 200 years ago.