The Edita Gruberová Collection
“When you sing, you can touch people’s souls. That is the greatest thing there is,”
Edita Gruberová once said in an interview.
On 7 September 2022, the estate of one of the greatest opera singers of her time will be auctioned at Dorotheum.
The Slovak soprano Edita Gruberová (1946–2021) was considered the “queen of bel canto”: she celebrated her international breakthrough at the Vienna State Opera in the 1970s and went on to shine at the world’s most renowned opera houses – including La Scala in Milan, the Royal Opera House in London’s Covent Garden and the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Her unique voice, which persuaded numerous directors to include rarely performed operas with particularly difficult vocal parts in their repertoire, will be remembered by an audience of millions following her death in October 2021.
Edita Gruberová was not only a gifted opera singer, but also a passionate collector. From sheet music and photographs to autographs and paintings, she collected a wide variety of objects, which she also liked to exhibit in her home. Mementos to which she had a personal connection were particularly valuable to Gruberová, such as the songbook of Richard Strauss, whom she greatly admired. Her estate also includes numerous stage costumes and an unusual necklace that the soprano wore exclusively during performances.
Edita Gruberová had a special fondness for works by the Viennese painter Ernst Fuchs, whom she knew well and for whom she also sat as a model. On 1 March 1990, Ernst Fuchs wrote from Jerusalem: “I hope to complete [The Lady of the Camelias, note] soon in Zurich. I would have liked to finish it in Monte Carlo, but I still need 1–2 sessions from nature. That means that poor Edita has to ‘sit’ again [...] I need the ‘life’ – the soul of the artist must radiate through it. The Queen of the Night has almost progressed as far as the Lady of the Camelias.”
Opera fans and culture enthusiasts can now purchase special mementos of opera history in the form of this great singer’s personal collection – in memory of Edita Gruberová.
© Bildrecht Theatermuseum Wien