Marita Napier (1939-2004)

Marita Napier (1939-2004)


Marita Napier made great contributions to the world of opera, overseas and in South Africa. Her most exceptional interpretations were those of the music of Wagner and Strauss. Her greatest achievements were as Sieglinde and Brunnhilde in “Die Walkure”, as Elsa , and Ortrud in “Lohengrin”, as Elisabeth in “Tannhauser”, as Isolde in “Tristan und Isolde” and as Senta in “Der Fliegende Hollander” (all works by Wagner).

Napier also achieved great recognition with the works of Strauss, especially as Chrysothemis in “Elektra”, and as Ariadne in “Ariadne auf Naxos”. Other meritorious contributions by Napier to the world of opera were her performances as Leonore in “Fidelio”, Abigaille in “Nabucco”, and in Puccini's, “Turandot”.

Composers whose works benefited by Napier's exceptional performances were Humperdinck, Janacek, Mahler, Mascagne, Mozart, Offenbach, Rossini, Roelof Temmingh and Weber.

Napier also contributed to the development and quality of opera in South Africa. She interpreted her roles with dramatic qualities and vocal projection.

Napier gave interpretations of Lieder (a German art song for solo voice and piano) internationally. Her knowledge with regard to this genre of art was ploughed back into South Africa, with successful performances of Lieder countrywide.

During 1980 and 1989 Napier's internal career as one of the world's top opera singers reached special heights. She made her debut performance in the Metropolitan Opera in 1986, and received a Grammy Award as well as a Vita Opera Prize in 1889. Napier also established herself during this time as one of the greatest interpreters of the compositions of Richard Strauss.

Recent Submissions