President pays tribute to the late Cara O’Sullivan, 'one of Ireland’s greatest sopranos'

'The news of the death of Cara O’Sullivan will have been received with great sadness by all those who love and appreciate music,' Mr Higgins said.
President pays tribute to the late Cara O’Sullivan, 'one of Ireland’s greatest sopranos'

Cara O'Sullivan: Tributes continue to pour in for the acclaimed singer who died in Cork yesterday. Picture: John Hennessy

Internationally-renowned opera singer Cara O’Sullivan will be remembered as one of Ireland’s greatest sopranos, President Michael D Higgins has said.

President Higgins made his comments this afternoon as tributes continue to pour in for the acclaimed singer who died in Cork yesterday. She had been diagnosed with early-onset dementia in 2018.

“The news of the death of Cara O’Sullivan will have been received with great sadness by all those who love and appreciate music,” Mr Higgins said.

“Proud of her Cork roots, and ever generous to local groups, Cara O’Sullivan was a performer whose talents were recognised the world over.

“She performed not only in local halls and festivals, but also at the Paris Opera, the Sydney Opera House, and the Albert Hall in London, making her mark in many productions of works by Mozart, Handel, Mendelssohn, and Verdi.

“Her outstanding talent was recognised early on in her career by the great Joan Sutherland, who helped her prepare for her first major role as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni.  

“She will be remembered as one of Ireland’s greatest sopranos, and one who was ever generous to her colleagues.

“To her siblings, her daughter, her extended family and wide circle of friends, Sabina and I send our deepest condolences.” 

Ms O'Sullivan is survived by her daughter, Christine, and siblings, Aoife, Nuala, and Jim.

The Lord Mayor of Cork has opened an online book of condolences for Ms O’Sullivan, who was the inaugural recipient of the Cork Culture Award in 2019 in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the artistic and cultural life of the city.

The Lord Mayor, Joe Kavanagh, said there was deep sadness in Cork and across the country last night when news emerged of the death of one of the city's greatest talents and one of its most wonderful personalities.

“Cara was blessed with a voice that could stop you in your tracks when she was played on the radio. To have seen her perform in Cork City Hall on numerous occasions was to have been truly privileged. 

"Ar dheis Dé go raibh a h-anam dílis,” he said.

A private family funeral is being organised for Ms O’Sullivan. 

It will take place in accordance with current HSE and public health guidelines, which limit attendance at funerals to just 10 people.

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