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Mary Curtis-Verna

Mary Curtis-Verna

Bio

Born in Salem MA in 1921, Mary Curtis-Verna represents Salem's connection to opera. While is Salem, she volunteered at the Salem Hospital Aid Association and went on to graduate from Salem High School before moving to New York to attend Julliard School of Music. Her first starring role as an opera singer came in Milan Italy, when she played the role of Desdemona in Verdi's Otello. She then went on to perform at the Boston Opera House and with the New York Metropolitan Opera. She returned to Salem in 1954 to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the First Church with her performance in a concert, performing at the same place that she had attended throughout her childhood. In 1957 she again came back to Salem to perform a benefit concert for Salem Hospital. (Photo by the Metropolitan Opera Archives)