Tributes have been paid to the soprano Cara O'Sullivan, who has died at the age of 59.

Cork-born Ms O'Sullivan was diagnosed with early-onset dementia in 2018. She died at Marymount Hospice in Cork on Tuesday evening.

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin said she had a beautiful voice, and the warmest personality and that Cork was very proud of her legacy. 

Ms O'Sullivan studied at the Cork School of Music and was one of the best known Irish singers of her generation.

She won the Young Musician of the Future award in 1990 and went on to have a successful career both in Ireland and internationally but always returned to her Cork base.

A warm and passionate performer, she was hugely popular with audiences and highly respected by her fellow musicians.

Her career was cut short in 2018 when she was diagnosed with early-onset dementia.

Concerts were organised in her honour in Cork and Dublin and in 2019 she received the inaugural Cork Culture Award.

Ms O'Sullivan is survived by her daughter, Christine.

An online Book of Condolence has been opened by the Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Joe Kavanagh, at:

"There was deep sadness in Cork and across the country last night when we learned of the death of one of our greatest talents and one of our most wonderful personalities," he said. 

"Cara was blessed with a voice that could stop you in your tracks when she was played on the radio. To have seen her perform in Cork City Hall on numerous occasions was to have been truly privileged. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis."

Former Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Mick Finn, described Ms O'Sullivan as a "world class superstar" and said she had contributed to many local fundraising initiatives and was held in huge esteem by the people of the city.

Irish National Opera described her as one of Ireland's greatest operatic talents. The Chair of  Cork Opera House, Tim Healy, said Cara O'Sullivan was a wonderful person with an amazing talent.