Peters, Roberta

Peters, Roberta,

1930–2017, American coloratura soprano, b. New York City as Roberta Peterman. Discovered by Jan PeercePeerce, Jan,
1904–85, American tenor, b. New York City as Jacob Pincus Perelmuth. Discovered by Arturo Toscanini, who chose him to be a soloist in a performance of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, Peerce made his operatic debut in Philadelphia in 1938, singing the Duke in
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, she auditioned for the Metropolitan Opera in 1950. Scheduled to debut as the Queen of the Night in Mozart's The Magic Flute in Jan., 1951, she substituted (Nov., 1950) at the last minute in role of Zerlina in Mozart's Don Giovanni, the first of more than 500 performances (1950–85) with the Met. Known for her excellent musicianship, clear, silvery voice, and charming stage presence, she was especially celebrated as The Queen of the Night, Zerlina, Rosina in Rossini's The Barber of Seville, Gilda in Verdi's Rigoletto, and Oscar in Verdi's Un Ballo in Maschera. She also performed internationally, in concert, on television, and in films.


See her memoir, Debut at the Met (1967).

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