Nellie Melba

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Opera Singer
Date of Birth May 19, 1861
Place of Birth Australia
Date of Death Feb 23, 1931 (69)
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Nellie Melba

Dame Nellie Melba GBE was an Australian operatic soprano. She became one of the most famous singers of the late Victorian era and the early 20th century, and was the first Australian to achieve international recognition as a classical musician. She took the pseudonym "Melba" from Melbourne, her home town. Melba studied singing in Melbourne and made a modest success in performances there. After a brief and unsuccessful marriage, she moved to Europe in search of a singing career. Failing to find engagements in London in 1886, she studied in Paris and soon made a great success there and in Brussels. Returning to London she quickly established herself as the leading lyric soprano at Covent Garden from 1888. She soon achieved further success in Paris and elsewhere in Europe, and later at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, debuting there in 1893. Her repertoire was small; in her whole career she sang no more than 25 roles and was closely identified with only ten.

About Nellie Melba

Australian opera singer who was internationally recognized for her soprano voice and later became a singing teacher at the Melbourne Conservatorium.

Before Fame

She studied music and played in concerts around Melbourne as a teenager.


Although many people thought her voice was well-suited for Mozart, she never sang any of his work.

Family Life

She had a son with her divorced husband Charles Nesbitt Frederick.


In 1907, she sang for Oscar Hammerstein I at his house in New York.

Information related to Nellie Melba

  • 19th-century Australian singers
  • Australian Dames Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire
  • People educated at the Presbyterian Ladies' College, Melbourne
  • Australian autobiographers
  • Australian operatic sopranos
  • Singers awarded knighthoods
  • ARIA Hall of Fame inductees
  • Singers from Melbourne
  • 20th-century Australian singers
  • Australian women writers
  • Women autobiographers
  • Women of the Victorian era
  • ARIA Award winners
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Latest information about Nellie Melba updated on March 02, 2021.

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