List of Famous Opera Singers People

List of Famous Opera Singers

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This list of the most notable and famous opera singers in the world includes photos, when available. Great opera singers worldwide and top opera singers in America can be found on this list, ordered by their level of prominence. From reputable opera singers to the lesser known opera singers in history and today, these are the top opera singers in the music world, of any voice - including famous soprano singers, baritones, and tenors.

Who are the most famous opera singers in the world? You've likely heard of modern opera singers like Plácido Domingo, but you'll also find countless other popular opera singers below, from all different eras.

If you can't get enough opera, be sure to check out these lists of Verdi operas, Rossini operas, and Puccini operas to get your opera fix.

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  1. 1

    Luciano Pavarotti, Cavaliere di Gran Croce OMRI was an Italian operatic tenor who also crossed over into popular music, eventually becoming one of the most commercially successful tenors of all time. He made numerous recordings of complete operas and individual arias, gaining worldwide fame for the ...more

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    • Age: Died at 72 (1935-2007)
    • Birthplace: Modena, Italy
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Actor
    • Credits: Rigoletto, Yes, Giorgio, Maria Stuarda, The 3 Tenors, + more
  2. 2

    José Plácido Domingo Embil, known as Plácido Domingo, is a Spanish tenor, conductor and arts administrator. As of the end of 2013, he has sung 144 different roles. One of 'The Three Tenors', Domingo has more recently taken on conducting opera and concert performances, and is also the general director of ...more

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    • Age: age 74
    • Birthplace: Retiro
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Conductor, Actor, Voice acting, Singer
    • Credits: Beverly Hills Chihuahua, Great Performances, La Traviata, Otello, Carmen, + more
  3. 3

    Andrea Bocelli, OMRI, OMDSM is an Italian classical tenor, recording artist and singer-songwriter. Born with poor eyesight, he became blind at the age of 12 following an association football accident. Bocelli has recorded fourteen solo studio albums, of both pop and classical music, three greatest hits ...more

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    • Age: age 57
    • Birthplace: Lajatico, Italy
    • Profession: Record producer, Songwriter, Musician, Singer-songwriter, Actor, + more
    • Credits: My Christmas Special, Credo: John Paul II, Homage to Rome, The Vision of Paolo Soleri: Prophet in the Desert, La Bohème, + more
  4. 4
    Paul Sorvino
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Paul Anthony Sorvino is an American actor. He often portrays authority figures on both sides of the law, and is possibly best known for his roles as Paulie Cicero, a portrayal of Paul Vario in the 1990 gangster film Goodfellas, and Sgt. Phil Cerreta on the police procedural and legal drama television ...more

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    • Age: age 76
    • Birthplace: New York City, USA, New York
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Sculptor, Activist, Copywriter, Television director, + more
    • Credits: Goodfellas, Law & Order, Romeo + Juliet, The Rocketeer, Dick Tracy, + more
  5. 5
    José Carreras
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Josep Maria Carreras i Coll, better known as José Carreras, is a Spanish tenor who is particularly known for his performances in the operas of Verdi and Puccini. Born in Barcelona, he made his debut on the operatic stage at 11 as Trujamán in Manuel de Falla's El retablo de Maese Pedro and went on to a ...more

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    • Age: age 69
    • Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
    • Profession: Singer
    • Credits: Caballé Beyond the Music, The Making of West Side Story, The 3 Tenors, Paris 1998, Puccini: La Bohème (Metropolitan Opera), + more
  6. 6
    Maria Callas
    Photo: Freebase/Fair use

    Maria Callas, Commendatore OMRI, was an American-born Greek soprano and one of the most renowned and influential opera singers of the 20th century. Critics praised her bel canto technique, wide-ranging voice and dramatic interpretations. Her repertoire ranged from classical opera seria to the bel canto ...more

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    • Age: Died at 54 (1923-1977)
    • Birthplace: Manhattan, New York City, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Actor, Singer
    • Credits: Medea, Maria Callas Portrait, Callas Walking Lucia, Mona Lisa, Maria Callas: In Concert: Hamburg 1959 & 1962
  7. 7

    Sir Peter Neville Luard Pears CBE was an English tenor. His career was closely associated with the composer Benjamin Britten, his personal and professional partner for nearly forty years. Pears's musical career started slowly. He was at first unsure whether to concentrate on playing or singing, and ...more

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    • Age: Died at 76 (1910-1986)
    • Birthplace: Farnham, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Librettist, Singer
    • Credits: Britten: Owen Wingrave, The Hidden Heart: A Life of Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears
  8. 8
    Mario Lanza
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Mario Lanza (January 31, 1921 – October 7, 1959, aged 38) was an American tenor, singer, actor and Hollywood movie star of the late 1940s and the 1950s. The son of Italian emigrants, he began studying to be a professional singer at the age of 16. He was born Alfred Arnold Cocozza. He changed his name ...more

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    • Age: Died at 38 (1921-1959)
    • Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States of America
    • Profession: Actor, Singer
    • Credits: The Great Caruso, Serenade, Because You're Mine, The Toast of New Orleans, Seven Hills of Rome, + more
  9. 9
    Renée Fleming
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Renée Fleming is an American opera singer and soprano whose repertoire encompasses Richard Strauss, Mozart, Handel, bel canto, lieder, French opera and chansons, jazz and indie rock. Fleming has a full lyric soprano voice. She has performed coloratura, lyric, and lighter spinto soprano operatic roles in ...more

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    • Age: age 56
    • Birthplace: Indiana, Pennsylvania, United States of America
    • Profession: Actor, Singer, Consultant
    • Credits: Richard Strauss: Arabella, In Search of Mozart
  10. 10
    Avery Brooks
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Avery Franklin Brooks is an American actor, director and occasional singer. Brooks is best known for his television roles as Benjamin Sisko on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, as Hawk on Spenser for Hire and its spinoff A Man Called Hawk, and as Dr. Bob Sweeney in the Academy Award-nominated film American ...more

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    • Age: age 67
    • Birthplace: Evansville, USA, Indiana, Center Township
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Television director, Professor, Actor, Artistic Director, + more
    • Credits: American History X, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, 15 Minutes, The Big Hit, Spenser: For Hire, + more
  11. 11
    Enrico Caruso
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Enrico Caruso was an Italian operatic tenor. He sang to great acclaim at the major opera houses of Europe and the Americas, appearing in a wide variety of roles from the Italian and French repertoires that ranged from the lyric to the dramatic. Caruso also made approximately 290 commercially released ...more

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    • Age: Died at 48 (1873-1921)
    • Birthplace: Naples, Italy
    • Profession: Singer
    • Credits: Una furtiva lagrima
  12. 12

    Jessye Mae Norman is an American Grammy award-winning opera singer and recitalist. A dramatic soprano, Norman is associated in particular with the Wagnerian repertoire, and with the roles of Sieglinde, Ariadne, Alceste, and Leonore. Norman has been inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame and is a ...more

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    • Age: age 70
    • Birthplace: Augusta, Georgia, United States of America
    • Profession: Musician, Singer
    • Credits: Oedipus Rex, Verdi: Requiem: Claudio Abbado, Symphony for the Spire, The People's Passion, Vangelis: Mythodea: Music for the NASA Missions: 2001 Mars Od, + more
  13. 13
    Bryn Terfel
    Photo: Freebase/CC-BY

    Bryn Terfel Jones CBE is a Welsh bass-baritone opera and concert singer. Terfel was initially associated with the roles of Mozart, particularly Figaro and Don Giovanni, but has subsequently shifted his attention to heavier roles, especially those by Wagner.more

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    • Age: age 50
    • Birthplace: Pant Glas, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Singer
    • Credits: Oedipus Rex, Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem Op. 45, Richard Strauss: Salome, Falstaff, Waldbuhne Concert: Italian Night, + more
  14. 14

    Measha Brueggergosman is a Canadian soprano who performs both as an opera singer and concert artist. She has performed internationally and won numerous awards. Her recordings of both classical and popular music have also received awards.more

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    • Age: age 38
    • Birthplace: Fredericton, Canada
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Actor, Singer
    • Credits: 2007 East Coast Music Awards
  15. 15

    Amaury Vassili is a French opera singer and professional tenor. His debut album Vincerò from 2009 went double platinum in France, and he has had international success with releases in Canada, South Africa and South Korea.more

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    • Age: age 26
    • Birthplace: Rouen, France
    • Profession: Opera Singer
  16. 16


    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Farinelli, was the stage name of Carlo Maria Michelangelo Nicola Broschi, celebrated Italian castrato singer of the 18th century and one of the greatest singers in the history of opera.more

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    • Age: Died at 77 (1705-1782)
    • Birthplace: Andria, Italy
    • Profession: Singer
  17. 17

    Philippe Jaroussky is a French countertenor. He began his musical career with the violin, winning an award at the Versailles conservatory and then took up the piano before turning to singing. He is noted for a virtuosic coloratura technique and for compelling and enlivened interpretations of baroque ...more

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    • Age: age 37
    • Birthplace: Maisons-Laffitte, France
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Musician, Singer
  18. 18

    Kai Wessel is a German countertenor and teacher at the Hochschule für Musik Köln.more

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    • Age: age 51
    • Birthplace: Hamburg, Germany
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Teacher
  19. 19
    Harve Presnell
    Photo: Freebase

    Harve Presnell is an actor.more

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    • Age: Died at 76 (1933-2009)
    • Birthplace: USA, California, Modesto
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Actor, Voice acting, Singer
    • Credits: Saving Private Ryan, Fargo, Old School, Face/Off, Patch Adams, + more
  20. 20
    Kiri Te Kanawa
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Dame Kiri Janette Te Kanawa ONZ DBE AC is a New Zealand soprano who has had a highly successful international opera career since 1968. Acclaimed as one of the most beloved sopranos in both the United Kingdom and the United States, she possesses a warm full lyric soprano voice, singing a wide array of ...more

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    • Age: age 71
    • Birthplace: Gisborne, New Zealand
    • Profession: Opera Singer, Actor, Singer
    • Credits: Don Giovanni, The Making of West Side Story, Puccini: Manon Lescaut, Kiri Te Kanawa: Home and Afar, Capriccio, + more
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