Tall Poppies: Postcard – Soprano, Joan Sutherland
In the third Tall Poppies Postcard, we revisit my interview from 2001 with the great Joan Sutherland, who died in 2010.
Not many opera singers could match the achievements of the Australian soprano, Joan Sutherland. Her brilliant career stretched over four decades and the legendary singer was celebrated in opera houses and concert halls around the world.
Yet, despite her worldwide fame and the many international honours she received during her lifetime, including Dame of the British Empire and the much coveted, Order of Merit in 1991, Joan Sutherland remained unaffected by it all. She had, after all, been on the stage since 1947.
In retirement, Dame Joan was in demand as an adjudicator at major singing competitions. And it was in this capacity that I met the celebrated singer, at the Queen Elisabeth Music competition, in Belgium. In this interview Dame Joan recalls her surprise at being accepted to study at the Royal College of Music in London and the lifelong benefits she felt of having spent seven years as a company soprano with Covent Garden.
Wishing you all the best from Berlin,