Today’s Google Doodle celebrates Mexican operatic soprano Ángela Peralta. Born this day in 1845, Peralta would have turned 175 today. The opera singer, pianist, harpist, and composer gain international fame for being one of the most critically acclaimed performers in Mexico.
According to Google Doodle, when she was eight years old, her career skyrocketed when she performed a cavatina from the Italian opera “Belisario.”
Baptised as María de los Ángeles Manuela Tranquilina Cirila Efrena Peralta Castera, the star enrolled at the Conservatorio Nacional de Música in Mexico City, to later make her operatic debut as Leonora in Giuseppe Verdi’s Il trovatore at the Teatro Nacional in Mexico City when she was 15 years old.
Wealthy patron Santiago de la Vega sponsored her studies abroad, and accompanied by her father, Manuel Peralta, went to study singing in Italy under Leopardi. In 1862, Ángela sang for the first time in Europe at La Scala in Milan.
Immediately after, she became a success. Thanks to her talent and charisma, she performed Bellini’s La sonnambula before King Victor Emmanuel II of Italy at the Teatro Regio in Turin. To later travel and sing at other opera houses, including Rome, Florence, Bologna, Genoa, Naples, Lisbon, Madrid, Barcelona, St. Petersburg, Alexandria, and Cairo.
Although her European tour was a success, Peralta traveled to her hometown and established a touring opera company. There she sang her signature roles, such as Amina in La sonnambula and Lucia in Lucia di Lammermoor.
While in Mexico, she fell in love with Mexican lawyer and entrepreneur Julián Montiel y Duarte. The affair didn’t sit well among her fellow citizens, and the scandal made the city‘s social elite boycotted her performances. Peralta received a lot of backlash and harassment; however, after her performance in Linda di Chamounix, she gained her reputation back. Unfortunately, the experience has a high impact on her, and she decided never to sing in Mexico City again.
After contracting yellow fever, Peralta passed away in Mazatlán, Mexico, at the age of 38. Her legacy is being preserved, and an opera house was named after her.
Fans of opera can visit the Ángela Peralta Theater located in Carnaval 1024 (just off Plaza Machado in the Centro Historico of Mazatlán).