Opera Scotland

Anna di Stasio Suggest updates

Born Naples 1933.

Died Rome, 4 November 2011.

Italian mezzo-soprano.

Anna di Stasio enjoyed a thirty year career singing with the major Italian opera houses, though not generally in the most powerful of Italian mezzo roles.

She studied in Rome, under Riccardo Stracciari.  She made her debut in 1950 at the San Carlo, Naples, in Carmen.  She went on to sing in all the leading Italian opera houses.  Elsewhere on the continent she appeared in Geneva,  Berlin,  London,  Budapest,  Lisbon,  and Brussels.  Further afield she sang in Tokyo,  Montreal,  and Rio de Janeiro.

Di Stasio made three visits to Scotland.  The first, in 1955, was as a member of an Italian Grand Opera touring company put together by Peter Daubeny and Eugene Iskoldoff, impresarios based in London.  They travelled round the UK for several weeks,  visiting Glasgow with a repertoire of operatic 'pops' - Verdi and Puccini plus Cav & Pag.

She came twice to the Edinburgh Festival.  In 1963 she was a member of the San Carlo Opera from Naples, the first Italian company to visit the Festival.  Her illustrious colleagues included Magda Olivero,  Alfredo Kraus,  Juan Oncina, Sesto Bruscantini,  Renato Capecchi and Piero Cappuccilli.   She came back in 1969 with the Teatro Comunale, Florence.   Her colleagues this time included Renata Scotto, Leyla Gencer, Shirley Verrett and  Tito Gobbi.

The baritone Augusto Frati seems to have had a similar career path, and visited Scotland on the same three occasions.

Anna di Stasio can be heard in a number of studio recordings.  These include:   Maddalena Rigoletto (with Grist,  Gedda,  MacNeil,  Ferrin,  Raimondi,  conducted by Molinari-Pradelli);   Inez Il trovatore (with Plowright,  Fassbaender,  Domingo and Zancanaro,  conducted by Giulini);   Emilia Otello (with Jones,  McCracken,  Fischer-Dieskau,  conducted by Barbirolli);   Mamma Lucia Cavalleria Rusticana  (with Suliotis,  Del Monaco,  Gobbi,  conducted by Varviso)  and Suzuki  Madama Butterfly (with Scotto,  Bergonzi,  Panerai,  conducted by Barbirolli).  Four of these recordings were made in the late sixties,  with the Trovatore much later, in 1984.

Roles in Scotland

Lola Alfio’s wife
Cavalleria Rusticana 1955
Suzuki Cio-Cio-San's servant
Madam Butterfly 1955
Maddalena sister of Sparafucile
Rigoletto 1955
Shepherd boy
Tosca 1955
Mlle Dangeville an actress
Adriana Lecouvreur 1963
Laura a peasant girl
Luisa Miller 1963
Anna Hannah Kennedy, Mary's companion
Maria Stuarda 1969
La Ciesca Marco's wife, aged thirty-eight
Gianni Schicchi 1969
Marianna Sofia's maid
Signor Bruschino 1969

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