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Florence Austral

Florence Austral (26 April 1892 – 15 May 1968) was an Australian operatic soprano renowned for her interpretation of the most demanding Wagnerian female roles, although she never gained the opportunity to appear at the Bayreuth Festival or the New York Metropolitan Opera.

She was born Florence Mary Wilson, but adopted the professional surname Austral in 1921 in honour of her homeland of Australia. She was considered to have few equals in sheer vocal quality until the arrival of Kirsten Flagstad. Acting was not her strong point and her characterisations were mainly achieved with the voice, which made her recordings so vastly enjoyable. She, Germaine Lubin and Frida Leider were considered to be the great Wagnerian dramatic sopranos of their era, together with Flagstad, who did not rise to international fame until the 1930s. (Among all post-War Wagnerian sopranos, only Birgit Nilsson and, to a lesser extent, Astrid Varnay, have been in their exalted league.)

Birth and Death Data: Born April 26, 1892 (Melbourne), Died May 15, 1968 (Newcastle)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1922 - 1936

Roles Represented in DAHR: soprano vocal

Notes: Born as Florence Wilson, changed name to Florence Austral.

= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.

Recordings

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor BS-99888 10-in. 3/17/1936 Trips abroad—Sweden Gustav V. Lindgren ; Lyric Quartet Female vocal quartet, with piano vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2250 12-in. 12/8/1922 Brünnhilde gives Sieglinde the broken sword (Act 3) Florence Austral ; Edith Furmedge ; Eugene Goossens ; Edward Halland ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2251 12-in. 12/8/1922 Brunnhilde recalls her Valkyrie days (Act 3) Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Tudor Davies ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2252 12-in. 12/12/1922 Brunnhilde yields to Siegfried (Finale of opera) Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Tudor Davies ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2253 12-in. 12/8/1922 Introduction : Brünnhilde's battle cry (Act 2) Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Robert Radford ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2254 12-in. 12/11/1922 Wotan warns Brünnhilde not to disobey (Act 2) Florence Austral ; Eugene Goossens ; Robert Radford ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2255 12-in. 12/11/1922 Brünnhilde implores the protection of fire (Act 2) Florence Austral ; Eugene Goossens ; Robert Radford ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2270 12-in. 12/14/1922 Brunnhilde hails the radiant sun (Act 3) Florence Austral ; Tudor Davies ; Percy Pitt ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2276 12-in. 12/18/1922 Brünnhilde foretells Siegmund's death Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Tudor Davies ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Vocal duet (soprano and baritone), with orchestra vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2277 12-in. 12/19/1922 The parting of Brünnhilde and Siegfried (Prologue, part 1) Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Tudor Davies ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocalists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2278 12-in. 12/19/1922 The parting of Brunnhilde and Siegfried (Prologue, part 2) Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Tudor Davies ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Vocal duet (soprano and tenor), with orchestra vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2303 12-in. 12/22/1923 Brunnhilde kindles the funeral pyre (Act 3) Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Tudor Davies ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocalists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2305 12-in. 12/22/1923 Brunnhilde kindles the funeral pyre (Act 3) Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocalist vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2306 12-in. 12/22/1923 Brunnhilde kindles the funeral pyre Florence Austral ; Albert Coates ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocalist vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2840 12-in. 4/16/1923 Siegfried follows the forest bird (Finale, Act 2) Albert Coates ; Tudor Davies ; Bessie Jones ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  
Gramophone Cc2841 12-in. 4/16/1923 The forest bird warns Siegfried (Act 2) Florence Austral ; Tudor Davies ; Eugene Goossens ; Sydney Russell ; Symphony Orchestra [Gramophone Co., 1920s] Orchestra and vocal soloists vocalist, soprano vocal  

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Austral, Florence," accessed December 1, 2022, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/105351.

Austral, Florence. (2022). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved December 1, 2022, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/105351.

"Austral, Florence." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2022. Web. 1 December 2022.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/105351

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