Munsel in 1962
Patrice Beverly Munsil
May 14, 1925
Spokane, Washington, U.S.
|Died||August 4, 2016 91) (aged|
Schroon Lake, New York, U.S.
|Known for||Opera, coloratura soprano|
(m. 1952;died 2007)
|Children||2 sons, 2 daughters|
|Parent(s)||Audley J. Munsil|
Eunice A. Munsil
Patrice Munsel (born Patrice Beverly Munsil; May 14, 1925 – August 4, 2016) was an American coloratura soprano. Nicknamed "Princess Pat", she was the youngest singer ever to star at the Metropolitan Opera.
A coloratura soprano is a type of operatic soprano voice that specializes in music that is distinguished by agile runs, leaps and trills.
The Metropolitan Opera is an opera company based in New York City, resident at the Metropolitan Opera House at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. The company is operated by the non-profit Metropolitan Opera Association, with Peter Gelb as general manager. As of 2018, the company's current music director is Yannick Nézet-Séguin.
An only child, Patrice Beverly Munsil (she later changed the spelling of her surname)was born and raised until age 15 in Spokane, Washington. Her father, Audley J. Munsil, was a local dentist. She attended Lewis and Clark High School before leaving at age fifteen, accompanied by her mother, to study in New York City, coached by Giacomo Spadoni (1884–1960).
Spokane is a city in Spokane County in the state of Washington in the northwestern United States. It is located on the Spokane River west of the Rocky Mountain foothills in eastern Washington, 92 miles (148 km) south of the Canada–US border, 18 miles (30 km) from the Washington–Idaho border, and 228 miles (367 km) east of Seattle along Interstate 90.
Lewis and Clark High School is a four-year public secondary school in Spokane, Washington, United States. Opened 107 years ago in 1912, it is located at 521 W. Fourth Ave. in downtown Spokane, bounded by I-90 to the north and Deaconess Medical Center to the west. It replaced South Central High School, destroyed by fire in 1910, and was named for the two leaders of the Corps of Discovery.
The City of New York, usually called either New York City (NYC) or simply New York (NY), is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2017 population of 8,622,698 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles (784 km2), New York is also the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 20,320,876 people in its 2017 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 23,876,155 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world, and exerts a significant impact upon commerce, entertainment, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, art, fashion, and sports. The city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.
Munsel first sang at the Metropolitan at age 17 in March 1943.She made her official Metropolitan debut on December 4, 1943, aged 18, singing Philine in Mignon , for which won popular praise but poor critical reviews. Her first opera contract was for three years at $40,000 per year; with other appearances she was making around $100,000 annually.
Mignon is an opéra comique in three acts by Ambroise Thomas. The original French libretto was by Jules Barbier and Michel Carré, based on Goethe's novel Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre. The Italian version was translated by Giuseppe Zaffira. The opera is mentioned in James Joyce's "The Dead" (Dubliners) and Willa Cather's The Professor's House. Thomas's goddaughter Mignon Nevada was named after the main character.
Perhaps best known for the roles of Adele in Die Fledermaus and Despina in Cosi Fan Tutte , Munsel sang 225 times at the Metropolitan Opera. Sir Rudolf Bing called her a "superb soubrette" and implied that she was the world's best. Her opera roles also included Rosina in The Barber of Seville and Gilda in Rigoletto .
Die Fledermaus is an operetta composed by Johann Strauss II to a German libretto by Karl Haffner and Richard Genée.
Sir Rudolf Bing, KBE was an Austrian-born opera impresario who worked in Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States, most notably being General Manager of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City from 1950 to 1972. He was naturalized as a British subject in 1946 and was knighted in 1971.
A soubrette is a type of operatic soprano voice fach, often cast as a female stock character in opera and theatre. The term arrived in English from Provençal via French, and means "conceited" or "coy". A soubrette is also defined as a young woman regarded as flirtatious or frivolous.
Her husband Robert C. Schuler (1917–2007) conceived and produced the ABC-TV primetime variety series The Patrice Munsel Show , which starred his wife, and was broadcast in the 1957–1958 season. Munsel appeared on many other TV shows during her career, including the role of Marietta (Countess d'Altena) in the January 15, 1955 live telecast of the operetta Naughty Marietta . She portrayed the title role in the 1953 film Melba , which chronicled the life of the great opera singer, Dame Nellie Melba. Munsel made frequent television appearances on The Bell Telephone Hour , and was the central singer in the Camp Fire Girls' famous TV commercial and song "Sing Around the camp fire (join the Camp Fire Girls)", aired in the mid-1960s.
Robert Charles Schuler was an American advertising and public-relations executive, television producer and writer. He is best known for creating and producing the ABC-TV primetime variety series The Patrice Munsel Show. Schuler was married to Munsel for more than five decades.
Naughty Marietta is an American television version of the operetta Naughty Marietta. The music for the operetta was composed by Victor Herbert. The book and the lyrics were written by Rida Johnson Young.
Naughty Marietta is an operetta in two acts, with libretto by Rida Johnson Young and music by Victor Herbert. Set in New Orleans in 1780, it tells how Captain Richard Warrington is commissioned to unmask and capture a notorious French pirate calling himself "Bras Piqué" – and how he is helped and hindered by a high-spirited runaway, Contessa Marietta. The score includes many well-known songs, including "Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life".
Munsel made her final performance for the Metropolitan Opera on January 28, 1958, in the title role in La Périchole .She appeared on stage as a guest during the 1966 Gala Farewell to the old opera house at Broadway and 39th Street. Munsel ended her career as an opera singer in 1981, and began to perform in musical comedies. She retired from performing in 2008.
La Périchole is an opéra bouffe in three acts by Jacques Offenbach. Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy wrote the French-language libretto based on the 1829 one act play Le carrosse du Saint-Sacrement by Prosper Mérimée, which was revived on 13 March 1850 at the Théâtre-Français. Offenbach was probably aware of this production, as he conducted the orchestra of the Comédie-Française from around this time. Another theatrical creation that pre-dates Offenbach's opéra bouffe and may have influenced the piece is a farce by Desforges and Théaulon given on 21 October 1835 at the Théâtre du Palais-Royal.
In 1952, Munsel married Robert C. Schuler, an advertising and public relations executive, producer, and writer.They were married for 55 years, until his death at age 90 in 2007, and had four children: Heidi (born 1953), Rhett (1955–2005), Scott (born 1958), and Nicole (born 1959). The younger two children were born prematurely. Munsel and Schuler co-wrote a 2005 memoir of Schuler's life entitled The Diva & I. Munsel died on August 4, 2016, at her home in Schroon Lake, New York, aged 91.
Dame Nellie Melba GBE was an Australian operatic soprano. She became one of the most famous singers of the late Victorian era and the early 20th century, and was the first Australian to achieve international recognition as a classical musician. She took the pseudonym "Melba" from Melbourne, her home town.
Keith Payson Lincoln is a former American football running back who played nine seasons in the American Football League with the San Diego Chargers and Buffalo Bills.
George Laird Shoup was the first Governor of Idaho, and also its last territorial governor. He served several months after statehood in 1890 and then became one of the state's first United States Senators.
Shirley Ruth Englehorn is an American former professional golfer. She won 11 tournaments during her LPGA Tour career, including one major, the 1970 LPGA Championship.
The Gonzaga Bulldogs are the intercollegiate athletic teams representing Gonzaga University, located in Spokane, Washington, United States. Gonzaga competes in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I as a member of the West Coast Conference.
Joe Albi Stadium is an outdoor athletic stadium in the northwest United States, located in Spokane, Washington. Opened in 1950 and primarily used for high school football, it is located in the northwest part of the city, just east of the Spokane River.
Raymond Paul Flaherty was an American football player and coach in the National Football League, and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He was part of three NFL Championship teams, one as a player and two as a head coach.
Spokane Coliseum was an indoor arena in the western United States, located in Spokane, Washington. Opened over 64 years ago in late 1954, it had a seating capacity of 5,400.
Charles Anthony Caruso, better known by his stage name of Charles Anthony, was an American actor, and tenor noted for his portrayal of comprimario characters in opera. Anthony had the distinction of appearing in more performances at the Metropolitan Opera than any other performer. He celebrated his fiftieth anniversary with the company in 2004, and gave his farewell in the role of the aged Emperor Altoum in Turandot, at the Met, on January 28, 2010.
Mount Spokane Ski and Snowboard Park is a ski resort in the western United States, located inside Mount Spokane State Park in Spokane County, Washington, about 23 miles (37 km) northeast of Spokane via State Route 206. The base elevation is at 3,818 feet (1,164 m) with the peak at 5,889 feet (1,795 m), yielding a vertical drop of 2,071 feet (631 m). Its slopes are primarily east-facing, and are served by six chairlifts.
Raymond A. "Babe" Curfman was an American football player and coach. He was the head coach at the New Mexico College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts in Las Cruces, from 1946 to 1947 and at the University of Idaho in Moscow from 1951 to 1953, compiling a career college football record of 15–30–1.
Emma Trentini was an Italian soprano opera singer who came to the United States in December 1906.
James Francis Prestel is a former professional football player, a defensive lineman in the National Football League in the 1960s.
The Gonzaga Bulldogs football team represented Gonzaga University in the sport of college football. Gonzaga last fielded a varsity football team 78 years ago in 1941. From 1892–1941, Gonzaga went 129–99–20.
James Allen "Babe" Brown was an American football and basketball coach and college athletics administrator. He was the head coach in basketball and football at the University of Idaho in Moscow, and later a three-sport coach and athletic director at the College of Idaho in Caldwell. He also coached multiple sports at four high schools in Idaho: Lewiston, Burley, Moscow, and Nampa.
Melba is a 1953 musical biopic drama film of the life of Australian-born soprano Nellie Melba, written by Harry Kurnitz and directed by Lewis Milestone for Horizon Pictures, marking the film debut of the Metropolitan Opera's Patrice Munsel.
Willis Merton "Wee Willie" Smith was an American football back who played one season with the New York Giants of the National Football League.