Opera Scotland

John Angelo Messana Suggest updates

Born 1945.

American counter-tenor.

John Angelo Messana studied in New York at the Juilliard School of Music. His first appearance in a Handel opera, in 1970, was at the Opera Barga festival in Lucca, where he sang Ottone in Agrippina.

He came to Britain in December 1970, and then began his professional singing career. Early appearances included two venues that were important in the Handel revival, the Unicorn Theatre in Abingdon and the Barber Institute, Birmingham. He appeared several times with Scottish Opera as Oberon, and also performed the high tenor part of the Astrologer in The Golden Cockerel. At English National Opera he sang Ptolemy in Julius Caesar.

He also worked in London with the National Theatre, in a memorable 1977 production of Ben Jonson's Volpone. This was directed by Sir Peter Hall and featured a stellar cast including Paul Scofield (Volpone), Ben Kingsley (Mosca), John Gielgud (Sir Politick Wouldbe) and Ian Charleson (Peregrine).

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