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Giannina Arangi-Lombardi (June 20, 1891, Marigliano - July 9, 1951, Milan) was a prominent spinto soprano, particularly associated with the Italian operatic repertory.[1]

After studies in Naples at the Conservatory of San Pietro a Majella with Beniamino Carelli, she made her debut in Rome in 1920, singing mezzo-soprano roles for the next three years. After further studies with Adelina Stehle and Tina Poli-Randaccio, she made a second debut as a soprano in 1923.[1]

She sang at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan from 1924 to 1930, making her debut as Elena in Boito's Mefistofele, under the baton of Arturo Toscanini. Rapidly invited in all the great opera houses of Europe, although she never appeared in Paris or London, she also sang to great acclaim in South America. She was chosen by Nellie Melba to take part in her farewell tour of Australia in 1928.

Arangi-Lombardi was especially renowned in roles such as La Vestale, Lucrezia Borgia, La Gioconda, and Aida. She sang, too, in the first Italian performance of Ariadne auf Naxos.

She retired while still in good voice during the 1930s and taught at the Music Conservatory in Milan, and later in Ankara, where she had famed soprano Leyla Gencer as a pupil.

Arangi-Lombardi possessed a bel canto technique which she applied at the service of a beautiful and grand voice. This combination was rare in Mediterranean sopranos of her time, who tended to be schooled in verismo methods. She made a number of 78-rpm discs of individual arias and duets, and can be heard to impressive effect in a few complete opera recordings, notably, La Gioconda, Aida, and Mefistofele, opposite the famous bass Nazzareno de Angelis.


  • Le guide de l'opĂ©ra, les indispensables de la musique, R. Mancini & J-J. Rouvereux, (Fayard, 1986), ISBN 2-213-01563-6


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