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Late German soprano's estate auctioned for charity

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AFP
Published
Mar 14, 2008
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Soprano Elizabeth Schwarzkopf - Photo : Pierre Verdy/AFP
VIENNA, March 14, 2008 (AFP) - The estate of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, the legendary German soprano who died in 2006, went under the hammer here this week, raising much more than expected for two children's charities, the Vienna-based auction house Dorotheum said Friday March 14th.

"Almost all of the 175 lots were sold", raising a total 160,640 euros (250,600 dollars) in all, which would be split between the SOS Children's Villages and the St. Anna Children's Cancer Research Institute, the auction house said in a statement.

A platinum diamond-studded bracelet from the first three decades of the 20th century fetched the highest price, being sold for 27,000 euros, almost double the starting price of 14,000 euros.

Schwarzkopf's fans from all over the world were among the bidders, as were some of her former pupils.

Schwarzkopf, who was made a Dame of the British Empire in 1992, was one of the most distinguished and influential singers of the 20th century, most famous for her interpretations of the works of Mozart and Strauss.

She died at her home in Vorarlberg, Austria, at the age of 90 on August 3, 2006.

In her will, she left everything to the two children's charities.

Her estate comprised personal items, jewellery, furniture, manuscripts, pictures and stage costumes and was put for auction on Thursday.

Among the lots were diamond and pearl earrings in white gold, accompanied by a picture of the singer herself wearing them.

There was also a silver Tiffany candelabra and the handwritten letters of the composer Hugo Wolf (1860-1903).

Dorotheum said it forewent its normal fees for the auction.

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