Superstardom for an American Seren?


eontyne Price, Jessye Norman, Kiri Tc Kanawa, Kathleen Baule: classy first ladies of song, each with the rare gift of speaking both to the snobs and to the hoi polloi in our age’s fatally cleft culture. The time is ripe for the emergence of a new avatar, but are such careers still possible? If so, the most determined candidate on the horizon is 1 surely the American soprano Cheryl Studer (“Cherry Strudel" to her fans), who at thirtyeight has chalked up an operatic discography that for quantity and variety might he the work of a dozen artists. Nature has given

Studer a grand, lustrous instrument, a quick mind, and hen dramatic instincts. The leap to superstardom in the world at large would require something in addition: the ability to shine alone, in recital. But Studer’s voice seems to want to leap and dive and revel in the orchestra’s multitudinous ocean. In her recordings to date, the accompaniment of a single piano leaves her high and dry. Still, who knows? Studer’s first major American recitals, in Miami (April 24) and at Carnegie Hall (May 4), might correct this impression, it will be worth tind£*i: ingout.