Online Encyclopedia


Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V20, Page 937 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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ADELINA JUAKA MARIA [BARONESS CEDERSTROM] PATTI (1843- ), the famous vocalist, daughter of an Italian singer, Salvatore Patti, was born at Madrid on the 19th of February 1843. Her mother, also a singer, was Spanish, being known before her marriage as Signora Barili. Both the parents of Adelina went to America, where their daughter was taught singing by Maurice Strakosch, who married Amelia Patti, an elder sister. Gifted with a brilliant soprano voice, Adelina Patti began her public career at the age of seven in the concert halls of New York, where in 1859 she also made her first appearance as Lucia in Donizetti's opera, Lucia di Lammermoor. On the 14th of May 1861 she sang as Amina in Bellini's opera La Sonnambula at Covent Garden, and from this time she became the leading operatic prima donna, her appearances in London, Paris and the other principal musical centres being a long succession of triumphs, and her roles covering all the great parts in Italian opera. In 1868 she married Henri, marquis de Caux, a member of Napoleon III.'s household, from whom she was divorced in 1885; she then married Nicolini, the tenor, who died in 1898; and in 1899 she became the wife of Baron Cederstrom, a Swede, who was naturalized as an Englishman. Madame Patti ceased to appear on the operatic stage in public after the 'eighties, but at Craig-y-Nos, her castle in Wales, she built a private theatre, and her occasional appearances at concerts at the Albert Hall continued to attract enthusiastic audiences, her singing of "Home, Sweet Home " becoming peculiarly associated with those events. Partly owing to her fine original training, partly to her splendid method and partly to her avoidance of Wagnerian roles, Madame Patti wonderfully preserved the freshness of her voice, and she will be remembered as, after Jenny Lind, the greatest soprano of the 19th century.
MARK PATTISON (1813-1884)

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