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Spanish Soprano Montserrat Caballe Celebrates 80th Birthday

April 12 is the 80th birthday of opera singer Maria de Montserrat Bibiana Concepcion Caballe i Folch, known as Montserrat Caballe. Born in Barcelona, the Spanish soprano made her professional debut in Basel, Switzerland, in 1956. She became internationally famous in 1965 after her performance as a stand-in in Donizetti's Lucrezia Borgia at New York's Carnegie Hall.

Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballe performs in Vienna on September 1, 1979.
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Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballe performs in Vienna on September 1, 1979.

Montserrat Caballe, seen in 1980, has sung a variety of roles, but is best known as an exponent of the bel canto repertoire, notably the works of Rossini, Bellini, Donizetti, and Verdi.
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Montserrat Caballe, seen in 1980, has sung a variety of roles, but is best known as an exponent of the bel canto repertoire, notably the works of Rossini, Bellini, Donizetti, and Verdi.

Montserrat Caballe sniffs a flower on stage after performing on October 3, 2005, in the Gewandhaus concert hall in Leipzig.
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Montserrat Caballe sniffs a flower on stage after performing on October 3, 2005, in the Gewandhaus concert hall in Leipzig.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko (left) invites Montserrat Caballe on stage before her concert in Kyiv on April 20, 2006, where he awarded her the Ukrainian medal of Princess Olga of the First Degree for her contributions to the opera world.
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Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko (left) invites Montserrat Caballe on stage before her concert in Kyiv on April 20, 2006, where he awarded her the Ukrainian medal of Princess Olga of the First Degree for her contributions to the opera world.

Montserrat Caballe (left) performs with Katarina Jankovic and the Radio Belgrade Symphony Orchestra in Belgrade on April 8, 2006.
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Montserrat Caballe (left) performs with Katarina Jankovic and the Radio Belgrade Symphony Orchestra in Belgrade on April 8, 2006.

Montserrat Caballe (right) chats with Patriach Ilya II of the Georgian Orthodox Church on December 13, 2007, during a visit to the cathedral in Tbilisi, where she was to give a benefit concert for homeless children.
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Montserrat Caballe (right) chats with Patriach Ilya II of the Georgian Orthodox Church on December 13, 2007, during a visit to the cathedral in Tbilisi, where she was to give a benefit concert for homeless children.

Montserrat Caballe (right) and her daughter Montserrat Marti perform on stage on the occasion of the 120th anniversary of the opening of the Campoamor Theater in Oviedo, Spain, on September 23, 2012.
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Montserrat Caballe (right) and her daughter Montserrat Marti perform on stage on the occasion of the 120th anniversary of the opening of the Campoamor Theater in Oviedo, Spain, on September 23, 2012.

Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballe poses during the opening of an exhibition commemorating the 50th anniversary of her debut at the GranTeatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Spain, on January 3, 2012.
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Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballe poses during the opening of an exhibition commemorating the 50th anniversary of her debut at the GranTeatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Spain, on January 3, 2012.

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