Sontag, Henriette

Sontag, Henriette

(hĕnrēĕt`ə zôn`täk), later

Contessa Rossi

(kôntĕs`sä rôs`sē), 1806–54, German operatic soprano, studied at the Prague Conservatory. In Vienna in 1823 she created the leading role in Weber's Euryanthe and in 1824 was soprano soloist in the premieres of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and Missa Solemnis. She made triumphant debuts in Berlin (1825), Paris (1826), and London (1828). After her marriage to a Sardinian ambassador, Conte Rossi, she left the stage in 1830 at the height of her success. In 1849 she resumed her career and in 1852 sang in the United States.


See biography by F. Russell (1964).

Sontag, Henriette


(pseudonym of Gertrud Walburga Sonntag; Countess Rossi by marriage). Born Jan. 3, 1806, in Coblenz; died June 17, 1854, in Mexico. German coloratura soprano.

Sontag studied at the Prague Conservatory from 1816 to 1821. She made her debut on the operatic stage in Prague in 1821. She became famous after her tour during 1824–30 of many European cities, including Moscow and St. Petersburg. She lived and gave concerts in St. Petersburg from 1838 to 1843. She resumed her operatic appearances in 1848. Sontag was one of the outstanding singers of Europe in the first half of the 19th century. She possessed a sonorous, flexible voice with a beautiful timbre and irreproachable musicality. Among her roles were Susanna and Donna Anna in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro and Don Giovanni, Euryanthe and Agatha in Weber’s Euryanthe and Der Freischütz, and Rosina in Rossini’s The Barber of Seville.


Pirchan, E. H. Sontag. Vienna, 1946.
Kiihner, H. Grosse Sängerinnen der Klassik und Romantik. Stuttgart, 1954.
“Genrietta Zontag.” Panteon i repertuar, 1850, vol. 3, book 6, pp. 11–18.
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