Metropolitan Opera Guild Salutes Marilyn Horne at 77th Annual Luncheon at New York’s Waldorf-Astoria

On Monday, October 31, the Metropolitan Opera Guild pays tribute to the legendary American mezzo-soprano Marilyn Horne, one of the greatest singers of our time, at the Guild’s 77th annual luncheon, a perennial highlight of the opera season. “Jackie! Celebrating Marilyn Horne” will feature tributes from her colleagues; live and prerecorded performances, including a musical tribute by acclaimed mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe; and other surprises. Among the 800 guests expected to attend are a bevy of stars and fans of opera, as well as an array of New York’s society, business and civic leaders. Current Met stars Bryn Terfel and Deborah Voigt will be on hand, along with many Met stars of the past, including Martina Arroyo, Richard Bonynge, Roberta Peters, Renata Scotto, and Frederica von Stade. Also attending will be Miss Horne’s friends, such as stage and screen actress Tyne Daly (who recently starred to great acclaim in a revival of Terrence McNally’s play Master Class), TV and stage actress Florence Henderson, and famed soprano Marni Nixon (who provided the film singing voices for Audrey Hepburn, Deborah Kerr, and Natalie Wood). Proceeds from the event will benefit the Guild’s education programs in New York City and throughout the country.

Widely known by her nickname Jackie, Marilyn Horne is one of the giant figures of American opera, beloved by the public and critics alike for her incandescent artistry and ebullient personality. While giving definitive performances of some of the most important characters in the mezzo-soprano repertory, Horne also revived interest in many neglected Baroque and bel canto works, including now-revered masterpieces by Handel, Bellini, and Rossini. Her television appearances on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, The Carol Burnett Show, and The Odd Couple (where she played Jackie, a secretary who secretly pined to be an opera diva) were for many Americans their first exposure to opera. She is also an impassioned advocate for the art-song recital, which she promotes through her Marilyn Horne Foundation, as well as with extensive teaching and mentoring.

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