Texaco Opera Quiz, second intermission, Metropolitan Opera broadcast of 23 March 1991: panelists BB (left), Speight Jenkins, and Charles Osborne, producer Richard Mohr, and quizmaster Edward Downes.

 Richard Mohr, producer of the Met broadcasts, gave me one of the greatest honors of my life (and a very personal recognition of Zinka's and my friendship, which he had long respected) when he asked me to write what became perforce the Metropolitan's official memorial tribute to her and included the invitation to deliver it myself during the third intermission of the broadcast of 17 March 1990. (I was already known to the radio audience before then.) The document below is Texaco’s official program of that broadcast. Dick and his unforgettable assistant, Vinnie Volpe, in forwarding to me over the next several months a large number of cards and letters from listeners, told me they had received more mail about that intermission than about any other presentation on a singer in all the years they were in charge of the broadcasts. This was entirely understandable. I said, “Well, of course, that’s because it was Zinka, who was one of the most beloved artists in all of Met history.” Richard replied, “Yes, and because it was so beautifully written and given, as I knew it would be. You didn’t stutter once!” Below the Milanov memorial program is that of another of my many appearances on the broadcasts, a different Texaco Opera Quiz from the one represented by the photograph above.


© Bruce Burroughs 2021