Beverly Sills Estate to be Sold at Doyle New York
One of the world's greatest coloratura sopranos, Beverly Sills' diverse collection comprises over 460 lots of fine art, furniture, decorations, jewelry, handbags, photographs, costume designs and opera memorabilia from her home overlooking New York's Central Park.
A variety of costume designs and memorabilia will be offered, including a design by Nikolai Alexandrovich Benois for Sills as Pamira in Rossini's "L'assedio de Corinto". The pastel on paper piece has an estimate of $1,500 to $2,500. Another drawing up for auction is by Jose Varona of a costume design for Sills as Cleopatra in Handel's "Giulio Cesare". The pencil, colored pencil, watercolor, ink wash and gouache on paper drawing has an estimate of $600 to $800.
Several Emmy Awards won by Sills will also be up for auction, including the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Emmy won by Sills for Outstanding Classical Music Program for 1974-1975. The lot also includes a New York Area Emmy Award for Outstanding Informational Program in 1976-1977 and three Emmy Honorary or Nomination plaques presented to Sills. Sold as a single lot, it has an estimate of $1,000 to $1,500.
Art lots include a pencil on paper drawing by Fernando Botero, a Colombian artist, which has an estimate of $20,000 to $30,000. There's also an oil on panel painting by Beryl Cook, a British artist, with an estimate of $12,000 to $18,000.
Handbag collectors will be impressed by the large selection of Judith Leiber evening bags, including clutches, shoulder bags and minaudieres.
The public is invited to the exhibition on view from Friday, October 2 through Tuesday, October 6. Doyle New York is located at 175 East 87th Street in Manhattan.
Born in Brooklyn, Beverly Sills was catapulted into international stardom singing Cleopatra in New York City Opera's landmark 1966 production of Handel's Julius Caesar. Acknowledged as "America's Queen of Opera," she appeared on the cover of Newsweek in 1969 and Time in 1971, and traveled to the world's leading opera houses as an ambassador for American talent. In 1975, she made a triumphal Metropolitan Opera debut as Pamira in Rossini's The Siege of Corinth, receiving an 18-minute ovation. Retiring from singing, she became Director of the New York City Opera (1979-1989), then Chairman of Lincoln Center (1994-2002), and finally Chairman of the Metropolitan Opera (2002-2005).