The Sopranos


The Sopranos with Debbie Voigt, a new eight-part series, celebrates the essential operatic role and the people who have given it voice. With lively music and commentary, each one-hour episode highlights a different aspect of the soprano’s world, including an examination of different types of soprano voices, illustrated with important sopranos of past and present. Voigt also takes a lighthearted look at selected opera plot themes, including death scenes and mad scenes.

The Sopranos with Debbie Voigt is a production of WQXR and is supported in part by The Thompson Family Foundation and the Monteforte Foundation.

Episode one – How to Die at the Opera
Host Debbie Voigt raises the curtain on this new series by counting down her five favorite ways for sopranos to die at the opera.

Episode two – The Girls of Opera and the Women Who Play Them
Voigt takes a listen to the sopranos who have found the vocal Fountain of Youth.

Episode three – Mozart’s Sopranos
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart said, “I like an aria to fit a singer as perfectly as a well-tailored suit of clothes.” Debbie Voigt explains why that makes Mozart’s sopranos the luckiest sopranos in the world.

Episode four – Puccini’s Women
Tracing the evolution of Puccini’s operatic heroines, from the vulnerable “little women,” to the strong and even fearsome females of his operas.

Episode five – Mad Scenes: The Crazy Women of Opera
Sopranos don’t get mad; they get mad scenes. It’s a chance for sopranos to pull out all the stops and indulge in vocal pyrotechnics and operatic histrionics.

Episode six – The Dynamos of Opera
The difference between dramatic and Wagnerian sopranos, the long distance runners of opera.

Episode seven – The Heavenly Blend of Sopranos and Mezzos
In the crazy world of opera, mezzos are usually the ones the soprano can trust. But sometimes they become a fearsome rival. When that happens, sparks fly.

Episode eight – Divas Who Dish
While working on her autobiography “Call Me Debbie,” Debbie Voigt was curious about how other singers dealt with telling their stories. This week, Voigt shares what she learned.