Category Archives: Tenors

Marcel Wittrisch

Marcel Wittrisch (1901-55) was born to a German family in Antwerp, Belgium. He studied voice in Munich, Leipzig, and Milan. His operatic debut was in Halle in 1925. His career was based in Berlin. He started as a lyric tenor with a voice whose timbre was also well suited for operetta. As his career progressed…


Read the full entry

Tenor Legends Celebrated Online in New La Scala Exhibition

The La Scala virtual exhibition described below in their announcement of the event is full of interesting material. It’s available with an English translation which has entertainment value of its own. It will only be available for a limited time. It’s a rewarding effort well worth the considerable time it takes to view and listen…


Read the full entry

Giuseppe Di Stefano – 100 Years

The third great tenor born in 1921 (July 24) was Giuseppe Di Stefano (1921-2008). Of all the tenors I heard in performance, Di Stefano had the most beautiful voice. He was also able to convey the emotional content of the music he sang with intensity and insight unmatched by any other tenor of his era….


Read the full entry

Franco Bonisolli

Franco Bonisolli (1938-2003)was an Italian tenor who had a voice of exceptional beauty. He also also exhibited very eccentric behavior, especially during the later part of his career. His erratic conduct resulted in the unfortunate sobriquet of Il pazzo (the madman). In addition to difficulty getting along with conductors, he inserted high notes into much…


Read the full entry

Donald Smith – The Great Australian Tenor

Donald Smith (1920-98) was the finest tenor Australia has yet to produce. Born in Queensland he served 7 months in a juvenile detention center for driving a car (not his) with some friends; he was 12 at the time. He worked as a sugar cane cutter for several years. In 1941 he enlisted in the…


Read the full entry

Franco Corelli – 100 Years

Franco Corelli was born in April of 1921 in Ancona on the Adriatic coast. He decided to pursue an musical career later than most singers. After two unsuccessful encounters with voice teachers he resolved to train himself by intense study of the recordings of the great Italian tenors who had preceded him. After winning the…


Read the full entry

Henri Legay

Henri Legay (1920-92) was a French tenor whose career was mostly based in Paris. For a while he supported himself singing while accompanying himself with a guitar at Parisian cabarets. He composed some of the songs he sang. He also played for Edith Piaf and Ives Montand. in 1947 he received a first prize from…


Read the full entry

Giuseppe Borgatti

Giuseppe Borgatti (1871-1950) was Italy’s first heldentenor. He was born and raised in rural northern Italy. Apparently he grew up illiterate. His voice was discovered during his compulsory military service. A wealthy patron sponsored both his musical and reading lessons. He made his operatic debut at age 21 as Gounod’s Faust. He became famous when…


Read the full entry

Francesco Merli

Francesco Merli (1887-1976) was born on a farm near Milan. He showed vocal ability at an early age, but did not pursue vocal studies aside from a few scattered lessons. His first job was as a janitor in a school. He entered a vocal competition sponsored by the conductor Cleofonte Campanini in 1914. He was…


Read the full entry

Mario Lanza – 100th Birthday

For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these, ‘It might have been’. John Greenleaf Whittier January 31, 2021 is the 100th anniversary of the birth Alfredo Arnold Cocozza known to posterity as Mario Lanza; Lanza was his mother’s maiden name. A native of Philadelphia, he was the son of Italian immigrants…


Read the full entry

Categories