Adelina Patti (10 February 1843 to 27 September 1919) was an Italian-French nineteenth-century opera singer, earning huge fees at the height of her career in the music capitals of Europe and America. The composer Giuseppe Verdi, writing in 1877, described her as being perhaps the finest singer who had ever lived. In her retirement, Patti, after her third marriage now officially Baroness Cederström, settled in a Breconshire valley, where she had, in 1878, purchased Craig-y-Nos Castle and embarked on a major building program, adding the north and south wings, the clock tower, conservatory, winter garden, and private theatre. It was at Craig-y-nos that she made her only gramophone recordings.
Patti also funded the substantial station building at Craig y Nos/Penwyllt on the Neath and Brecon Railway. In 1918, she presented the Winter Garden building from her Craig-y-Nos estate to the city of Swansea. It was re-erected and renamed the Patti Pavilion. She died at Craig-y-Nos and eight months later was buried at the Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris to be close to her Father and favourite composer, Rossini, in accordance with the wishes in her will.
To mark the centenary of her death, there will be a programme of events around Breconshire, and more in Swansea, including an exhibition of Patti’s effects in y Gaer, a concert featuring some of her most famous arias, and a heritage day featuring leading Patti scholars in Theatre Brycheiniog. The full schedule will be available in early summer.