V1675. LUCIA POPP, w.Slatkin Cond. Münchner Rundfunkorchester: Mozart Operatic Arias. (Japan) EMI 47019, recorded 1983. Long out-of-print, Final ever-so-slightly used copy!
“Lucia Popp was born as Lucia Poppová on 12 November 1939 in Uhorská Vesm in Czechoslovakia (today Záhorská Ves, Slovakia). She studied in Bratislava, where she also made her professional début as the Queen of the Night in DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE. This became one of her early signature roles and it was also in this role that she made her recording début in 1964. This was in the legendary EMI set, conducted by Otto Klemperer. Gradually she moved over to lyric soprano roles like Susanna, Zerlina, Sophie and later took on heavier roles like Donna Elvira and Donna Anna, the Feldmarschallin and even Eva in DIE MEISTERSINGER
She is an assured Konstanze and Ilia’s recitative (from IDOMENEO) is sung with a few tears in the voice and a sensitive flicker. She is excellent as Donna Elvira, and her Donna Anna is convincingly dramatic. She negotiates the quite fearful coloratura with an ease that few sopranos from the dramatic camp could even dream of. Fiordiligi’s ‘Come scoglio’ is also a feared aria with its wide range, forcing the singer down into the contralto basement. For a former Queen of the Night the upper reaches should pose no problems, but having started her vocal training as a mezzo-soprano she has full control of the depths as well. Sadly she died of cancer at only 54 but we are lucky to have so much of her repertoire preserved on record.”
- Göran Forsling, MusicWeb International
“Lucia Popp was an accomplished coloratura soprano in the early years of her career, but later she moved with great success into the lyric repertoire and, still later, into the lighter Strauss and Wagner operas. She had the ideal voice and personality for Viennese operetta, and was one of the best Rosalindes (DIE FLEDERMAUS) and Hanna Glawaris (THE MERRY WIDOW) of her time. She was also a celebrated recitalist and lieder singer, where her singing benefited from her charming stage presence. Her untimely death in 1993 cut short a major career.
Popp initially entered the Bratislava Academy to study drama. Anna Hrusovska-Prosenkova, a voice teacher at the Academy, happened to hear her singing during a performance of Moličre's LE BOURGEOIS GENTILHOMME, and offered her voice lessons. She began her studies as a mezzo-soprano, but her voice quite suddenly developed a high upper register -- so much so that her professional début was as Mozart's Queen of the Night at the Bratislava Opera. That role was to remain a staple for many years of her early career.
Popp soon made débuts at the Theater an der Wien and the Vienna State Opera, where her first role was Barbarina in LE NOZZE DI FIGARO. She had strong ties to the Vienna State Opera during her career, though she left their regular roster in 1967, and in 1979 she was named an Austrian Kammersängerin. She made her Covent Garden début in 1966 as Oscar in UN BALLO IN MASCHERA, and her Met début in 1967 as the Queen of the Night.
During the 1970s, she left coloratura roles for lyric ones, particularly of Mozart, where she was an especially effective Pamina and Susanna, and in the 1980s she began to add even heavier roles, including Eva in DIE MEISTERSINGER and Strauss' Arabella (both in 1983) with similar success.”
- Anne Feeney, allmusic.com