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Dame Nellie Melba

Gladdys Moncrieff

June Bronhill

Joan Sutherland

Peter Dawson





Dame Nellie Melba (born Helen Porter Mitchell in Melbourne)

In 1882 she had a marriage breakup to Charles Armstrong an Anglo Irish Sugar Plantation manager at Port Mackay Queensland. She also had a son George born in 1883. She had moved from Melbourne with her family to a Sugar Farm in Northern Queensland.

After 7 years of singing classes she made a big debut (aged 25) in 1884 in Melbourne, then went to London for a lukewarm recital reception.

Dame Nellie Melba (her operatic nom de guerre) was introduced to the World after studying for 1 year with Mathilde Marchesi on Dec 31st. 1886. From then on her operatic and singing career blossomed, in St. Petersburg, Milan, New York, and London.

Percy Grainger’s Father built her house at Coldstream Victoria.

She also made a Film Clip with Charlie Chaplin.

In 1920 she took part in direct broadcasts of music, and also sang at the Opening of the New Parliament at Canberra in 1927.


Gladys Lillian Moncrief b1892—d1976

“Our Glad” gained immense popularity in Musical Comedy in Australia and New Zealand.

She began by singing as a teenager in her Family Road Show.

She also did a lot of work with the J.C. Williamson’s Shows.

After a serious Car Accident injury in 1938, she returned to the Stage in 1941. In 1951 she entertained troops in Japan and Korea. From there she established a Home at the Sunshine Coast.


June Bronhill b 1929 in Broken Hill d 2005 in Sydney.

Her stage name Bronhill was an abbreviation of Broken Hill, which was her way of thanking the people of Broken Hill for their financial support, with money to send her overseas for Training as a Singer (similar to the people who supported Gladys Moncrief in Queensland.

June sang in many , many operas’s as the Leading Lady. She also appeared at the Sydney Opera House in 1975.


Joan Sutherland b 1926----d

Australia’s best known Diva.

Her husband, Conductor Richard Bonyge, played a great part in arranging her music to be sung and also encouraging her voice training.

Appearances in the World gave her the accolade ”La Stupenda”

From 1965 to her retirement in 1990 she regularly returned to Australia, although domiciled in Switzerland with her husband.

She recorded more than 40 Opera’s.


Peter Dawson Bass Baritone  b1882—d1961

Born in Adelaide and active from 1899 to 1950’s

In 1984 he was chosen by the Guiness Book of Recorded Sound, as one of the top 10 singers on disc of all time. He was linked alongside Elvis Presley and Enrico Caruso.

In 2007 Dawson’s recording of the song ”Along the Road to Gundagai” was added to the National Film and Sound Archive Sounds of Australia Registry.




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