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Auger, Arleen (Joyce)

debut opera angeles role

Auger, Arleen (Joyce), esteemed American soprano; b. Los Angeles, Sept. 13, 1939; d. Amsterdam, June 10, 1993. She majored in education at Calif. State Univ. in Long Beach (B.A., 1963); then studied voice with Ralph Errolle in Chicago. She made her European operatic debut as the Queen of the Night in Die Zaub-erflöte at the Vienna State Opera (1967), remaining on its roster until 1974; also chose that role for her N.Y.C. Opera debut (March 16, 1969). She appeared with the conductor Helmuth Rilling on a tour of Japan in 1974, and subsequently gained prominence through a major series of recordings of the music of Bach under his direction; also devoted increasing attention to a concert career. On Oct. 2, 1978, she made her Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y. as Marzelline in Fidelio, and, in 1984, made a notably successful N.Y. recital debut. Her appearance in the title role of Handel’s Alcina in London (1985) and Los Angeles (1986) elicited further critical accolades. In 1986 she was chosen to sing at the royal wedding of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson in London. During the 1986-87 season, she made an extensive concert tour of the U.S. and Europe. In 1992 her career was tragically ended when she was stricken with a fatal brain tumor.

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