Artist Spotlight: Jessye Norman

I used to want to be an opera singer. I studied classical voice in undergrad and worked at The Met in my 20s. Not as a singer, though. I worked in the education department.

A perk of that job was that I attended final dress rehearsals for all of the operas.  This is where I got to see and hear Norman rehearse the role of Emilia Marty in Janacek’s The Makroposlis Case. Emilia Marty, an opera singer herself who has an interesting and long past. 300 years ago her father, a physician, made an elixir for the king for everlasting life. The king had the physician test the elixir on his daughter, Emilia. What a role. I’ll never forget it.

NYTs Obituary