Singers The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time  

Buster McDermott
Originally by
25k votes 2.8k voters 216k views 176 items

List Rules Vote up the top famous opera singers in history, of any voice type.

Opera isn’t a genre with which the average person is very familiar. In modern entertainment, opera and theatrical drama has drawn smaller audiences than it once did years ago. However, opera can be a beautiful experience, there’s nothing quite the raw power of the skilled human voice filling an entire room, communicating drama and romance. It takes an incredibly well-trained voice to sing opera, but the musicians on this list have mastered the craft.

Who are the best opera singers of all time? The opera singers on this list are history’s all time best performers. They come from a variety of backgrounds and time periods, but the effect they had on the world of music and opera is incredible. An opera singer is a finely-tuned, highly skilled musician who has a unique, powerful voice, and can deliver a breathtaking live performance.

This list features the best opera singers in the world's history, ranked by the community. Some of the great opera singers on this list include Luciano Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, Maria Callas, Plácido Domingo, and Mario Lanza. Vote up the best opera singers in history below, or add a talented opera singer who isn't already on the list.

1
796 446
Luciano Pavarotti is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Luciano Pavarotti Died at 72 (1935-2007)

2
506 283
Enrico Caruso is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Enrico Caruso Died at 48 (1873-1921)

3
607 421
Maria Callas is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Maria Callas Died at 54 (1923-1977)

4
485 357
Plácido Domingo is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time

5
508 269
Joan Sutherland is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Joan Sutherland Died at 84 (1926-2010)

6
449 243
Franco Corelli is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Franco Corelli Died at 82 (1921-2003)

7
233 134
Birgit Nilsson is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
joão-vitor added Birgit Nilsson Died at 87 (1918-2005)

8
519 197
Beniamino Gigli is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Beniamino Gigli Died at 67 (1890-1957)

9
285 161
Jonas Kaufmann is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time

10
225 116
Jessye Norman is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Jessye Norman age 72

11
407 213
Jussi Björling is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Jussi Björling Died at 49 (1911-1960)

12
136 58
Mirella Freni is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Mirella Freni age 83

13
386 248
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau Died at 87 (1925-2012)

14
347 213
Mario del Monaco is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
mikhail0623 added Mario del Monaco Died at 67 (1915-1982)

15
221 227
Kiri Te Kanawa is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
SvanbjörgSverrisdóttir added Kiri Te Kanawa age 74

16
283 178
Fritz Wunderlich is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Fritz Wunderlich

17
299 156
Leontyne Price is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time

18
181 76
Montserrat Caballé is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
gnicholls added Montserrat Caballé age 84

19
135 46
Dmitri Hvorostovsky is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time

20
275 209
José Carreras is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time

21
342 158
Feodor Chaliapin is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Feodor Chaliapin Died at 65 (1873-1938)

22
166 96
Marilyn Horne is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Marilyn Horne age 84

23
209 123
Giuseppe Di Stefano is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Valentina Badici added Giuseppe Di Stefano Died at 87 (1921-2008)

24
262 145
Renata Tebaldi is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Renata Tebaldi Died at 82 (1922-2004)

25
188 119
Kirsten Flagstad is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Kirsten Flagstad

26
212 115
Carlo Bergonzi is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Carlo Bergonzi Died at 90 (1924-2014)

27
88 40
Sherrill Milnes is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
ilikehistory added Sherrill Milnes age 83

28
315 288
Mario Lanza is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Mario Lanza Died at 38 (1921-1959)

29
101 39
Nicolaï Ghiaurov is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Nicolaï Ghiaurov Died at 75 (1929-2004)

30
227 137
Renee Fleming is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Renee Fleming

31
133 65
Marian Anderson is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Marian Anderson Died at 96 (1897-1993)

32
83 25
Tito Gobbi is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Tito Gobbi Died at 71 (1913-1984)

33
197 145
Cecilia Bartoli is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time

34
214 131
Nicolai Gedda is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Nicolai Gedda

35
218 165
Anna Netrebko is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Anna Netrebko age 46

36
220 138
Elisabeth Schwarzkopf is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Elisabeth Schwarzkopf Died at 91 (1915-2006)

37
85 66
Diana Damrau is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Michael Hartman-Fiedler added Diana Damrau age 46

38
79 40
Richard Tucker is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Stuart Naidich added Richard Tucker Died at 62 (1913-1975)

39
151 86
Bryn Terfel is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Bryn Terfel age 52

40
92 57
Elīna Garanča is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time

41
69 36
Fiorenza Cossotto is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Andy Saltman added Fiorenza Cossotto age 82

42
59 4
Leyla Gencer is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Алпан Балкыш added Leyla Gencer Died at 80 (1928-2008)

43
113 61
Lauritz Melchior is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Lauritz Melchior Died at 83 (1890-1973)

44
212 114
Victoria de los Angeles is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Victoria de los Angeles

45
120 55
Rosa Ponselle is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Rosa Ponselle

46
78 20
Anna Moffo is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Anna Moffo Died at 74 (1932-2006)

47
119 71
Juan Diego Flórez is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Giovanni Collareta added Juan Diego Flórez age 45

48
73 31
Samuel Ramey is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
Samuel Ramey age 76

49
62 41
Hans Hotter is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
ifapple added Hans Hotter Died at 94 (1909-2003)

50
98 39
Beverly Sills is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Opera Singers of All Time
gnicholls added Beverly Sills Died at 78 (1929-2007)