The death of the Melbourne-born soprano Margaret Nisbett has been announced. She was 94.
In her prime and working in London, Nisbett sang full-time with Sadlers Wells for eight years as one of their leading ladies. Her roles included Adele in Die Fledermaus, Gilda in Rigoletto and Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro. She also performed for BBC TV and Radio.
Nisbett returned to Australia in late 1962 and in 1965 was approached by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) to perform a series of operas for TV, with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. She is remembered by many for her Maria in The Sound of Music, in a production that toured nationally and the new Zealand for 15 months. She performed a successful 36-week series on ABC TV, Margaret Nisbett Operetta and was a regular musical guest on the Melbourne variety show In Melbourne Tonight, hosted by Graham Kennedy.
Nisbett started piano and singing lessons aged nine. Later, while working as a typist, she competed in singing competitions and performed in concerts before joining the National Theatre School to study opera.
In 1947, aged 18, Nisbett got...