Dame Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, DBE (9 December 1915 – 3 August 2006) was a German-born Austrian/British soprano opera singer and recitalist. She was among the most renowned classical singers of the 20th century, much admired for her performances of Mozart, Schubert, Strauss, and Wolf.
Olga Maria Elisabeth Friederike Schwarzkopf was born in Jarotschin in the Province of Posen in Prussia (today Poland) to Friedrich Schwarzkopf and his wife, Elisabeth (née Fröhlich). Schwarzkopf showed an interest in music from an early age. She performed in her first opera in 1928, as Eurydice in a school production of Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice in Magdeburg, Germany. In 1934, Schwarzkopf began her musical studies at the Berlin Hochschule für Musik.
However at the suggestion of the baritone Karl Schmitt-Walter, she switched teachers and started working with the coloratura soprano Maria Ivogün as well as with Ivogün's husband, the pianist Michael Raucheisen. Ivogün's advice to her new pupil was, "Be noble, my child!"..
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