Born Sept. 19, 1915 in Monessen, PA
Died March 23, 2010 of heart failure in San Francisco, CA
Mezzo-soprano Blanche Thebom was a mainstay at the Metropolitan Opera for decades.
Thebom performed more than 350 times at the Met from 1944 to 1967. She built a second career as a teacher, first at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock, and then in San Francisco.
She was part of a mid-century wave of American opera singers to gain international fame and was best known for her Wagner performances, including roles as Brangane in “Tristan und Isolde” and Fricka in “Die Walkure.”
During her long career at the Met, she was also know for performances as Amneris in “Aida,” Marina in “Boris Godunov,” Prince Orlofsky in “Die Fledermaus,” Herodias in “Salome” and Adelaide in “Arabella.”
Thebom also toured throughout Europe and was the first American to perform at Moscow’s Bolshoi Opera.
She also sang in such films as “Irish Eyes Are Smiling” in 1944 and “The Great Caruso” in 1951.