Battle expanded her repertoire into light lyric soprano and lyric coloratura soprano roles during the 1980s and early 1990s. In 1985, Michael Walsh of Time magazine called her "the best lyric coloratura in the world". Although she no longer appears in operas, Battle remains active in concert and recital performances. As a child and young adult, Battle was both a good student and a good singer, but her ambitions were not grand. She was awarded a scholarship to the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music in Ohio, but she chose to major in music education rather than risk a performance career.
In 1971, with both bachelor's and master's degrees, Battle set out to teach music to Cincinnati's inner-city youth. While teaching 5th and 6th grade music, she continued to study voice privately, which resulted in an audition with Thomas Schippers (then conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra). He was so moved by Battle's remarkable voice that he hired the almost totally inexperienced singer to perform at the 1972 Festival of Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy. Read more on Last.fm.
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|Canción de cuna (Voice)|
|Going Home from "Largo" of Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95 " From the New World" (Voice)|