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Opera/Louisa Tetrazzini


I am researching a family legendary tale about my maternal grandfather.  I want to revise the text that has been handed down to me into a short story.  Central to the story is my grandfather's attendance at La Scala and hearing Tetrazzini sing.  I have not been able to find the date of that performance.  From other facts in the story it had to happen after 1900 but before 1905, when Tetrazzini left Italy to tour in various cities around the world.  It is said that before she left Italy she did a tour of the provinces, which would, presumably mean she sang at La Scalla.  

If you do not know the answer to this, perhaps you could advise me as to how I might proceed.  I have researched La Scala and Tetrazzini online but have not found the relevant information.

Hi Daniel--

According to Italian Wikipedia, Tetrazzini never sang at La Scala:

Nonostante il successo internazionale la Tetrazzini non cantò mai al Teatro alla Scala, probabilmente per volere del direttore Arturo Toscanini. Tra i due infatti non corse mai buon sangue. Addirittura quando la cantante si esibì al Metropolitan Opera di New York ottenne che Toscanini fosse sostituito con un direttore di suo gradimento. Al Metropolitan Opera House di New York debutta nel 1911 come Lucia in Lucia di Lammermoor con Pasquale Amato ed Angelo Badà e nel 1912 è Violetta ne La traviata e Gilda in Rigoletto.

Here is that paragraph as translated when I click on "translate," which I think is provided by google.  Obviously, the translation needs some cleaning up:

Despite the international success the Tetrazzini not ever sang at La Scala , probably at the behest of the director Arturo Toscanini . Between the two races ever in fact not bad blood. Even when the singer performed at the Metropolitan Opera of New York got that Toscanini was replaced with a director to his liking. At the Metropolitan Opera House of New York debut in 1911 as Lucia in Lucia di Lammermoor with Pasquale Amato and Angelo Badà and in 1912 was Violetta in La traviata and Gilda in Rigoletto.

I hope this helps.

Mike Leone


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Mike Leone


I have a special affinity for Italian opera, but I also have a lot of experience with French and German opera. I know somewhat less about opera from countries other than these, although there are some exceptions. My main area of interest is the period 1775-1925, although there are a few baroque and modern works that I love.


I've been listening to opera since 1963 and have amassed a large collection of recorded opera during those years. My interest here spans the entire history of recorded opera, going back to its very earliest days.

I have published a couple of lengthy reviews and a tribute to Mario del Monaco in Immortal Performances, have had some letters appear in Fanfare and have several reviews on

B.A., University of Maryland 1973, M.A., University of Texas 1975, J.D., University of Houston 1998 (none of these degrees are in music).

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