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Mario Filippeschi (1907 - 1979)

The tenor Mario Filippeschi (1907-1979) was born in Montefoscoli, Pisa. At the age of seventeen he studied the clarinet before joining the army in 1927 for a three year period. After study with various vocal teachers, he made his début as Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor at Colorno, near Busseto in 1937 and this was followed by two seasons singing in Holland, followed by further engagements in Germany and Italy during the war years. His Roman début was as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly in March 1942. Filippeschi’s first La Scala appearance was in September 1948 as Maurizio in Adriana Lecouvreur. He soon appeared regularly in Rome, Naples, Spain, France, Mexico and South America. He received considerable acclaim in Rossini’s Armide opposite Maria Callas at the 1952 Florence May Festival. His single London season was in 1958 with a visiting Italian company at the Drury Lane Theatre singing Manrico and Arnold in Guglielmo Tell. There his robust spinto tenor voice, with its fine upper register, was generously displayed. His repertoire included all the main Verdi, Puccini and a large number of verismo rôles. After retiring in 1965 he became a stage director. He died in Florence on Christmas Day 1979.



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