Cesira Ferrani


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(b Turin, 8 May 1863; d Pollone, nr Biella, 4 May 1943). Italian soprano. She studied with Antonietta Fricci in Turin, where she made her début in 1887 as Micaëla and later sang Gilda. After singing in Venice and Genoa, where she took part in the first performance of Pietro Mascagni's Le maschere (1891), she created the title role in Giacomo Puccini's Manon Lescaut at Turin (1893), repeating the role in Buenos Aires, Rome and other cities. She sang Suzel (L᾽amico Fritz) at Monte Carlo (1895), then created Mimì in La bohème at Turin (1896). At La Scala she sang Mélisande in the first Milan performance of Pelléas et Mélisande with Arturo Toscanini (1908). Her repertory included Juliet, Jules Massenet's Sapho and Charlotte, Amelia (Simon Boccanegra), Elisabeth (Tannhäuser), Elsa and Eva (Die Meistersinger). She retired from the stage after a final appearance as Mélisande (Rome, 1909), a role in which she was much admired, and devoted herself to teaching in her native city, opening her salon to the intellectuals of Turin.


From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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