Above: Debria Brown as Klytemnestra in the Welsh National Opera production of ELEKTRA, 1977
A mezzo-soprano of African-American heritage, Debria Brown was born in New Orleans. She was mentored by the great basso Norman Treigle, but came to New York City mainly to study dance on scholarship with Katherine Dunham.
Debria Brown made her professional operatic debut at NYC Opera in 1958 as Carmen, with Treigle as Escamillo. In 1961 she created the role of Tituba in Ward's THE CRUCIBLE. Her European career took her to Aachen, Stuttgart, the Vienna Volksoper (as Gershwin's Bess), Bregenz, and Karlsruhe.
Ms. Brown joined the faculty of the University of Houston in 1992, but she continued to perform and she had engagements booked when she passed away in 2001.
This scene is from the Welsh National Opera's English-language production of ELEKTRA: