Fritzi Scheff was a popular opera, vaudeville, and stage performer, debuting in a role with the Frankfurt Opera when she was just eight years old. She went on to have an extremely successful career in opera, performing in such venues as the Royal Opera in Munich, the Metropolitan Opera, and Covent Garden, where she gave a command performance for Queen Victoria. She was known as “The Little Devil of Grand Opera.”
Around the turn of the century she made the move to comic opera and vaudeville, and in 1908 a critic claimed “There is no other singer on the American stage today who ranks with her in the field of comic opera.” Her popularity was such that in 1915 she starred in the silent film Pretty Mrs. Smith where she played - yep! - pretty Mrs. Drucilla Smith, a role she had popularized on Broadway.
Happy birthday, Fritzi Scheff!