(December 15, 1934)
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Raina Kabaivanska is a Bulgarian opera singer.
She is one of the leading lyrico-spinto sopranos of her generation and is particularly associated with the roles of Verdi and Puccini as well as performing a wide range of other roles.
She made her debut at the Bulgarian National Opera in Sofia in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin in 1957.
Two years later she appeared as Nedda in Leoncavallo's Pagliacci in Italy. In 1961, she gave her first performance at La Scala as Agnese in Bellini's Beatrice di Tenda, opposite Dame Joan Sutherland.
She sang widely throughout Italy, and in Turin in 1973 she sang Elena in I Vespri Siciliani, in the only production ever directed by Maria Callas.
In 1962, she made her debuts at the Royal Opera House in London, as Desdemona and then the Metropolitan Opera in New York, as Nedda. She then went on to perform in Moscow, Buenos Aires, the Paris Opéra, the Vienna State Opera, the Budapest Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the San Francisco Opera, the Dallas Opera, etc.
She also appeared in a few opera films, including a Pagliacci with Jon Vickers in 1968, Il Trovatore, with Franco Bonisolli, in 1975, and Tosca, opposite Plácido Domingo, in 1976.
A versatile singing actress she is known for having a beautiful voice and is blessed with having fine musicianship.
She has won many awards and currently teaches and takes masterclasses in Siena Italy.
In 2007 she sang at Pavarotti's funeral mass.
Raina Kabaivanska is one of the featured stars on our "Legends" product range.