Why mark the date?
1 She was the greatest Isolde for half a century.
2 She taught the world how to sing Wagner (and how not)
3 She gave the world premiere of Richard Strauss’s Four Last Songs
4 She was the guiding conscience of Decca’s Ring
5 She, more than anyone, raised the singing at Covent Garden to world standards. See Covent Garden: The Untold Story, for chapter and verse.
Here’s a commemorative essay, and more, from the University of Warwick.
photo (c) Lebrecht Music&Arts