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Helen Traubel
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    (June 16, 1899-July 28, 1972)
    Born in St. Louis, Missouri
    Dramatic soprano
    Best-known roles were Brunnhilde in 'Der Ring des Nibelungen' and Isolde in 'Tistan und Isolde'
    Appeared at the New York Metropolitan Opera 176 times -- 168 times in Wagnerian roles
    Appeared in the films 'Deep In My Heart' (1954) and 'The Ladies Man' (1961)
    Appeared on Broadway in 'Pipe Dream' (1955)
    Appeared in a 'Bell Telephone Hour' presentation of 'The Mikado' with Groucho Marx (1960)
    She dropped out of high school to devote herself full time to singing.
    She constantly talked about how much she wanted to sing in Italian opera, but never got around to doing it.
    She agreed to be a vocal coach for President Harry S. Truman's daughter Margaret, then complained that the association had damaged her reputation in the opera world.
    She left the Met after a series of clashes with manager Rudolph Bing, who objected to her performing in nightclubs and on television (1953).
    She was a part-owner of the St. Louis Browns.
    She wrote two mystery novels, 'The Ptomaine Canary' (1950) and 'The Metropolitan Opera Murders' (1951).
    She said about her dispute with Rudolf Bing, 'To assert that art can be found in the Metropolitan Opera House but not in a night club is rank snobbery.'
    She formed an unlikely but successful partnership with Jimmy Durante, of whom she quipped, 'It's a pleasure to record with a great artiste whose voice sounds the same with bad needles.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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