Frederica von Stade

Frederica von Stade (born June 1, 1945) is an American mezzo-soprano.


Von Stade's surname derives from the Hanseatic port city of Stade.[1] One of her forebears served as Stade's mayor.[2]

Her great-grandfather was Charles Steele, lawyer, banker and partner of J. P. Morgan.[3] Her grandfathers were Edward W. Clucas, stockbroker and yachtsman, and Francis Skiddy von Stade Sr.,[3] importer of bristles, President of the Saratoga Association[4] and chairman of the United States Polo Association. Her great-aunt, Eleanor Steele Reese, was a concert and opera singer who gave up music for an ascetic life of ranching and rural philanthropy.[5][6] Von Stade's parents were First Lieutenant Charles S. von Stade,[3] winner of the 1941 US Open Polo Championship,[7] and Sara Clucas von Stade,[8] a descendant of Jonathan Trumbull,[8] the last colonial Governor of Connecticut, who became a valued advisor of George Washington during the War of Independence.