"All of us envied her, because all that we had to struggle so hard to achieve seemed so natural and self-evident to her because she knew how to sing from the heart."
Irmgard Seefried was one of the most gifted sopranos of the the musical world after the World War II. Born in Swabia, Germany in 1919, she made her debut at the Vienna State Opera aged only 23. Her talents were quickly recognized by the conductors like Karl Böhm and Herbert von Karajan and by the early 50s she had established fame in the roles like Marzelline (Fidelio), Susanna (Le Nozze di Figaro), Zerlina (Don Giovanni), Octavian (der Rosenkavalier) and Fiordiligi (Cosi fan Tutte).
However, despite her achievements in opera, the field where she found her ideal medium of expression was lied. She excelled in the lieder of Schubert, Schumann, Mahler, Brahms as well as the lesser known songs by Hugo Wolf. Her voice remained youthful throughout her career, capable of emotional warmth and spontaneity.Her performances were stylish without mannerisms. A situation which led her colleague the famous soprano Elisabeth Schwarzkopf to comment: "All of us envied her, because all that we had to struggle so hard to achieve seemed so natural and self-evident to her because she knew how to sing from the heart." She died in Vienna in November 1988.She was also married to the famous violinist Wolfgang Schneiderhan.