Opera Singers - A - Page 2

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(1) Alda
(2) Alda
(3) Alvarez
(4) Alvarez
(5) Alvarez
(6) Anselmi
(7) Anselmi
(8) Anselmi
(9) Ansseau
(10) Anthes
(1-2) Frances Alda: New Zealand (raised in Australia) soprano (1879- 1952). She was a Marchesi pupil. She made her debut (1904) as Manon at the Opéra-Comique where she was called a "delicious twenty-two year old Australian." She was invited to the Metropolitan Opera in 1908 by the conductor, Arturo Toscanini. She met Toscanini at La Scala during her debut there in the Milan premiere of Charpentier's Louise. She remained at the Metropolitan for twenty-two seasons. A testament to her intelligence, she learned the standard repertory as well as roles in operas seldom heard today, such as Giordano's La Cena delle Beffe, Hadley's Cleopatra's Night, Catalani's Loreley, Herbert's Madeleine and Rabaud's Marouf. It has been said that her long career at the Metropolitan can be attributed, in part, to her marriage to the general manager of that house, Giulio Gatti-Casazza, whom she met in Milan. After twenty-two years of marriage she divorced Gatti-Casazza and subsequently devoted several years to the concert stage. (3-5) Albert Alvarez: French tenor (1861-1933). His early musical training included a position as a bandmaster in France. He studied with Martini and made his debut (1887) in Ghent as Faust, a role he reprised for his Paris Opéra debut in 1892. He created more than ten roles for that house including Mirka in Augusta Holmes's La Montagne Noire in 1895, Walther (Les Maitres Chantiers de Nuremberg) in 1897, Manrique (le Trouvére), and Tristan (Tristan et Isolde) in 1904, and Nicias in the world premiere of Thaïs (1894). (6-8) Giuseppe Anselmi: Sicilian tenor: (1876-1929) was a concert violinist before becoming a singer. He made his debut (1896) as Turiddu (Cavalleria Rusticana) at the Athens Royal Opera. This tall and handsome performer had his greatest successes in St. Petersburg, Moscow, and Italy. However, his heart, literally, belonged to Spain. He loved that country so much that he he bequeathed his heart to the Madrid Conservatory. The rest of his body was laid to rest in the Cathedral of Catania, Italy. His beautiful voice was enhanced by effective pianissimos. On the down side, his voice was less controlled in the lower register. (9) Fernand Ansseau: Belgian tenor (1890-1972) as Cavaradossi with Mme. Andriani as Tosca. These two singers recorded Tosca together in 1916 on the Laison label. Ansseau made his debut (1913) in Dijon as Jean in Hérodiade. He was quite popular in Brussels, Monte Carlo, London, and Paris. His objections to war and later to the German occupation of his homeland limited his singing opportunities, and eventually led to his retirement in 1940. (10) Georg Anthes: German tenor (1863-1923). Anthes was the leading heroic tenor at the Dresden Opera and successor to Heinrich Gudehus. He made his debut in Freiburg as Max in Der Freischütz. At the Metropolitan Opera (1902-03, 08-09) he performed his Lohengrin nine times (seen here).
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