Swedish soprano Soderstrom dies

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The Swedish soprano Elisabeth Soderstrom has died at the age of 82, the Royal Swedish Opera announced on Saturday.

She died in a Stockholm hospital on Friday morning.

During a career spanning half a century, the singer performed regularly at New York's Metropolitan Opera and Covent Garden in London, and made numerous appearances at Britain's Glyndebourne summer festival.

The Royal Swedish Opera said Soderstrom had "a unique ability to move the audience both through her voice and through her acting."

She would be remembered particularly for her performances as Tatiana in Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin and the Marshallin in Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier, the Opera said.

Her name would also long be associated with the role of Marguerite in Gounod's Faust, for which she won great acclaim with performances in the United States and in the former Soviet Union.

Born on May 7, 1927, in Stockholm to a Russian mother and a Swedish father, Soderstrom made her debut at the city's Drottningholms Theatre.

She continued to appear regularly at the Stockholm opera while pursuing her international career, and made her final stage appearance as the countess in Tchaikovsky's The Queen of Spades in 1999.

From 1993 to 1996, when she took up teaching singing, she was also the artistic director of the Drottningholms Theatre.