Dame Kiri Te Kanawa was born on March 6, 1944, in Gisborne, North Island, New Zealand. As a soprano, Te Kanawa shot to stardom in the 1970s with appearances at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London, and the support of conductors Sir Colin Davis and Sir Georg Solti. In August 2009 Te Kanawa announced that she would fully retire from opera the following year.
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