Alessandro Ziliani


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(b Bussetto, 3 June 1906; d Milan, 18 Feb 1977). Italian tenor. He studied with Alfredo Cechi in Milan and in 1928 made his début there at the Dal Verme in Madama Butterfly. At Rome he sang in the première of Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari's La vedova scaltra (1931) and Pietro Mascagni's Pinotta (1932). In that year he also made his début at La Scala, where he continued to appear until 1946. His roles there included Dmitry in Boris Godunov, Enzo in La Gioconda and Des Grieux in Manon Lescaut, in which he was widely considered to be the best of his generation. He made guest appearances at San Francisco in 1938 and travelled extensively in Europe. When Ferruccio Busoni's Turandot had its Italian première in 1940 he sang the role of Calaf. He also appeared with Maria Callas in the revival of Gioachino Rossini's Armida at the Florence Festival of 1952. In later years he turned to operetta, films and concert work; he then established himself as an agent, promoting, among others, the career of Luciano Pavarotti. His recordings include the part of Alfredo in the first electrical recording of La traviata and display a resonant lyric voice and pleasing style.

From The Grove Book of Opera Singers in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Opera.

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