Undaunted by changes to her voice, opera singer Regina Resnik reinvented herself multiple times in her career, taking on unexpected new roles. Resnik began vocal training under Rosalie Miller at age thirteen and studied German and Italian to prepare herself for opera, but turned down a scholarship to Juilliard in favor of Hunter College, where she could earn a teaching degree in case she didn’t break in as a performer. Despite her fears, she debuted in 1942 first at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and then in the New Opera Company’s production of Macbeth. She toured both throughout the US and internationally before her first performance at the Met in 1944 as Leonora in Il Trovatore. She quickly became the Metropolitan Opera’s leading soprano. However, in the 1950s her voice lowered in pitch, shifting her range from soprano to mezzo-soprano. She sought out a new teacher, Giuseppe Danise, and trained her richer, warmer voice for mezzo parts. When the new manager of the Met refused to give her the new roles she coveted, instead relegating her to minor parts, she travelled to Europe and became a sensation in London and Vienna, earning many accolades. In the 1970s she successfully shifted from performing to directing operas.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Regina Resnik." (Viewed on March 18, 2018) <https://jwa.org/people/resnik-regina>.