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Bruna Castagna (1905 - 1983)

Bruna Castagna was a successful student of piano in Milan before switching to singing as a pupil of Tina Scognamiglio. Her operatic stage début, as Marina/Boris Godunov at Mantua’s Teatro Sociale in 1925, was swiftly followed by her début as Suzuki/Madama Butterfly at La Scala, Milan, where she remained between 1925 and 1928. The conductor Tullio Serafin was instrumental in her engagement by the Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires, between 1927 and 1930, where she participated in the local première of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Sadko. Castagna was again active at La Scala during  the 1929–1923 and 1930–1931 seasons, singing Erda among other rôles, and participated in the first performance of Felice Lattuada’s Don Giovanni at the San Carlo, Naples, during 1929. Admired by Toscanini as a singer who could do full justice to the technical demands of Rossini’s bel canto operas, she enjoyed great success at La Scala, where she continued to perform between 1932 and 1934, singing Isabella/L’italiana in Algeri in 1933. During the same period she gave her first performance as Carmen, which was to become one of her signature rôles, at the Teatro del Liceu in Barcelona.




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