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Forgotten Opera Singers
Jan 2, 2015
Francesco Battaglia (Tenor) (Catania 1893 – Milano 1968)
He began his career in the early 1920’s and
after he had appeared at the famous Italian provincial opera houses in 1930 he
sang the role of Manrico in G. Verdi’s ‘’Il Trovatore’’ at the Opera House in Rome. In 1931 he appeared at
the Teatro San Carlo in Napoli, in 1933 at the Opera House in Monte Carlo (as Riccardo in G. Verdi’s ‘’Un
ballo in maschera’’). In 1933 he he made guest appearance at the Covent Garden
in London. Here
he performed as Radames in G. Verdi’s ‘’Aida’’, then sang at the Berlin Städtischen Oper. In
1936 he made his debut at the Teatro Alla Scala as Vasili in ‘’Siberia’’ by U. Giordano. Till 1948 he appeared several
times in this famous opera house, among other things as Kalaf in G. Puccini’s ‘’Turandot’’,
Canio in ‘’Pagliacci’’ and Pollione in ‘’Norma’’ of V. Bellini. He sang the role
of Kalaf also in 1937 at the Arena di Verona. In the same 1937 he guested at
the Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels.
In 1930 at the Teatro Comunale in Florence he appeared as Radames
in G. Verdi’s ‘’Aida’’, in 1932 as Pollione in ‘’Norma’’ by V. Bellini and in
1942 the role of Canio in R. Leoncavallo’s ‘’Pagliacci’’. Other guest
performances put down to him in France
(among other things in 1935 in Vichy), Spain, Holland, USA and in Australia. He continued his stage
activity also during the years after the Second World War and sang among other
things in 1953 the role of Canio at the festival of the Terme di Caracalla,
Roma. To his most important roles counted the Gennaro in G. Donizetti’s ‘’Lucrezia
Borgia’’, Duke in ‘’Rigoletto’’, Cavaradossi in ‘’Tosca’’, Mateo in ‘’Conchita’’
of R. Zandonai and the Gennaro in ‘’I gioielli della Madonna’’ by E.
Wolf-Ferrari. In 1925 he made 10 records for Polydor in Berlin.
Chronology of some appearances
1930 Rome Opera House Trovatore (Manrico)
1930 Florence Teatro Comunale Aida (Radames)
1933 Monte Carlo Opera House Un ballo in maschera (Riccardo)
1933 London Covent Garden Aida (Radames)
1936 Milano Teatro Alla Scala Siberia (Vasili)
1937 Verona Arena Turandot (Calaf)
RECORDINGS FOR SALE
Nordisk Polyphon Aktieselskab, Berlin 1925?
Trovatore (Verdi): Di quella pira J2022 L.70700 Pagliacci (Leoncavallo): Vesti la giubba J22079 L.72962