This collection contains photographs, correspondence, sheet music, and other material pertaining to Marcella Craft, an early
twentieth century opera singer who spent portions of her career in Europe and Riverside, California. Includes photographs
from her early childhood, materials from her teaching years at the Marcella Craft School of Opera, personal correspondence
from various individuals, programs, newspaper clippings, and hand written reviews of her performances, and sheet music from
composers such as Richard Strauss and Bellini.
Marcella Craft was born in Indianapolis, Indiana in 1874. In 1887 she came to Riverside, California and became a soloist in
the choir of Riverside's First Baptist Church. She later moved to Boston and studied voice under Charles R. Adams. Following
these voice lessons she moved to Milan, Italy to further her musical training. In 1902 Craft made her operatic debut as Lenora
in the opera "Il Travatore". A few years later Craft moved to Germany and began to sing in the cities of Mainz and Kiel. While
in Germany Craft became the first American woman to ever be invited to perform for the imperial family. World War I put Craft's
career on hold in Germany so she returned to the United States and began performing with the San Carlo Opera Company. Unable
to obtain the same level of fame in the United States, she returned to Europe to perform until her retirement in the 1930's.
She moved back to Riverside after retiring where she established the Riverside Opera Company and taught music until her death
on December 12, 1959.
2.56 linear feet
Copyright Unknown: Some materials in these collections may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). In addition,
the reproduction, and/or commercial use, of some materials may be restricted by gift or purchase agreements, donor restrictions,
privacy and publicity rights, licensing agreement(s), and/or trademark rights. Distribution or reproduction of materials protected
by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. To the extent other
restrictions apply, permission for distribution or reproduction from the applicable rights holder is also required. Responsibility
for obtaining permissions, and for any use rests exclusively with the user
This collection is open for research.