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With her captivating lyric soprano voice, Kathleen Battle was among the most acclaimed figures in contemporary opera. Born August 13, 1948 in Portsmouth, Ohio, she studied at the College Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, and made her professional debut at the Spoleto Festival in Brahms' Ein deutsches Requiem under conductor Thomas Schippers. Battle's Metropolitan Opera debut came in Wagner's Tannhauser, and she went on to perform in virtually all of the world's leading opera houses, among them those in Vienna, Paris, San Francisco and Chicago. She also appeared with the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Vienna Philharmonic and the Orchestre de Paris. Battle's stage repertoire spanned centuries, ranging from Handel to Strauss, and she performed with vocalists ranging from Luciano Pavarotti to Jessye Norman to Placido Domingo. Among her most notable recordings are 1986's Kathleen Battle Sings Mozart, the recepient of three Grammy Awards, and 1992's Kathleen Battle at Carnegie Hall. ~ Jason Ankeny