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Giannina Arangi-Lombardi (1891 - 1951)

Giannina Arangi-Lombardi initially studied piano at the Naples Conservatory of San Pietro a Majella, and then singing with Beniamino Carelli, who taught her as a mezzo-soprano. She made a relatively late début, as Lola in Cavalleria rusticana at the Teatro Costanzi in Rome, and continued to sing as a mezzo for several years albeit without great success, appearing as Amneris/ida and Brangäne/Tristan und Isolde at the Teatro dal Verme in Milan and as La Cieca/La Gioconda  (Palermo, Parma). Finding that she was more comfortable singing in the soprano range she recommenced her vocal studies, with Adelina Stehle (the first Nanetta in Falstaff) and Tina Poli-Randaccio. She made her second operatic stage début as a soprano in 1923 and was invited to sing at La Scala, Milan in 1924 as Elena/Mefistofele. Her success was immediate and for the rest of the 1920s Arangi-Lombardi was one of the leading sopranos at La Scala, often singing with the company’s music director Arturo Toscanini. She proved to be an outstanding Aida (with Toscanini, 1929), Donna Anna/Don Giovanni (opening of the 1929–1930 season), Gioconda, Santuzza/Cavalleria rusticana (with Toscanini, 1927), Leonora/Il trovatore (with Panizza, 1927), Julia/La Vestale and Lucrezia/Lucrezia Borgia. As a result of her great success as Aida, Toscanini invited Arangi-Lombardi to sing this rôle and that of Leonora/Il trovatore when the company of La Scala appeared in 1929 in Berlin, where she sang




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