Dominic Massa / EyewitnessNews
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NEWORLEANS - Norman Treigle is often hailed as one of the opera world's greatest stars, but up until now there was very little effort to honor him in his hometown.But on Thursday, the New Orleans City Council took steps to rename a section of Armstrong Park for Treigle.
His daughter Phyllis, herself an accomplished soprano, joined other relatives at Thursday's City Council meeting for the official renaming of the plaza outside of the Mahalia Jackson Theater for Performing Arts, which will now be known as Treigle Plaza.
It includes the elevated area in front of the main entrance to the theater, facing the lagoon and including the large fountain directly outside of the theatre.
Treigle appeared at opening night for the theater in 1973, with a performance of Giuseppe Verdi's Messa di Requiem, which he performed with the New Orleans Symphony.
Treigle, who died in 1975, launched his performing career in New Orleans, making his debut with the New Orleans Opera Association.He made his New York City Opera debut in 1953, and went on to become one of the leading bass-baritones of his day, with internationally-renowned performances.
The City Council ordinance dedicating Treigle Plaza was sponsored by City Councilmember at-large Jackie Clarkson, a longtime supporter of the arts and opera in the city, and District C Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer, whose district includes the Mahalia Jackson Theater.
In addition to Treigle family members, New Orleans Opera Association director Robert Lyall and Treigle biographer Brian Morgan were present for the event at City Hall Thursday.