Israelis mourn a Met soprano, 88main
Daughter of the Viennese cabaret artist Oskar Teller, Friedl Teller-Blum escaped with her parents to America after the 1938 Anschluss as a six year-old refugee.
She made her first stage appearance at 16, was recruited to the Metropolitan Opera Studio and sang more than 40 roles, including Violetta and Butterfly.
In 1961 she migrated to Israel, where she performed with all the leading ensembles and headed the voice department at Tel Aviv University. Friedl died yesterday in Givatayim.
She sang Violetta in Brussels in 1961, great artist!
I think that as such a great artist she deserved to be referred to by name. Not that ‘she sang at the Met’. It gives the impression that she was a busker in the Underground. (You choose which city).
Unless my memory deceives me, there was a recording in the IBA archives of Mrs Teller-Blum singing ‘Lieder eines Fahrenden Gesellen in Yiddish!
With all due respect, I checked the Met’s official archives – even tried using each part of her tripartite name individually – and came up with nothing. I can’t even verify the existence of a Metropolitan Opera Studio in her era (since 1980 there has been the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program). Are you confusing this with the Met’s National Company?
This is another case of calling someone a “Met soprano” because she sang two performances of Floßhilde with the company on tour in Pittsburgh and Atlanta. The Met’s short-lived and long-defunct National Company is NOT the same as the Met.
I attended over 1.000 Met performances since 1970 and can still knock out “In diesen heil’gen Halen” in my shower. When I buy the farm, will you refer to me in the headline of my obit as a “Met basso?”