Italian soprano Magda Olivero has died at the age of 104 in Milan after a career spanning more than 70 years.
Magda Olivero died on September 8 in hospital after suffering a stroke last month, Italian news agency Ansa reported.
She made her debut in the 1930s but stopped performing after getting married in 1941.
Magda Olivero was coaxed back on to the stage 10 years later and enjoyed renewed stardom in Europe and the US.
She was still performing in public at the age of 99.
Magda Olivero made her debut in the 1930s but stopped performing after getting married in 1941
La Scala opera house in Milan – where Magda Olivero made her earliest performances – asked the public to hold a moment of silence before a performance on September 8.
The opera house described Magda Olivero’s voice as charismatic, her acting as formidable and her intelligence as “ready and cutting until the end”.
Italian daily La Repubblica said even in March 2010 when she performed at the Palazzo Cusani in Milan her voice was still “grandiose”.
The New York Times described Magda Olivero as a soprano who “for decades whipped audiences around the world into a frenzy of adulation that was operatic even by operatic standards – despite the fact that by her own ready admission she did not possess an especially lovely voice”.
It said that over the years bootleg recordings of Magda Oliver’s voice “passed from hand to covert hand among her legions of acolytes”.
“At live performances, she took the stage to screams of ecstasy and left it to thundering ovations,” the publication said.
Magda Olivero’s signature roles included title parts in Puccini’s Tosca, Umberto Giordano’s Fedora and Luigi Cherubini’s Medea.
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Former musical director of La Scala, Claudio Abbado, has died at the age of 80.
Italian conductor died in Bologna after a long illness, said Raffaella Grimaudo, spokeswoman for the Bologna mayor’s office.
Claudio Abbado, who was appointed senator for life in Italy last year, had cancelled several recent performances and appearances due to ill health.
He also conducted the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) between 1979 and 1988.
Claudio Abbado won plaudits for his LSO concerts of his favorite composer, Gustav Mahler.
He was also musical director of Vienna’s Staatsoper from 1986 to 1991 and a guest conductor at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
In 1989, Claudio Abbado was elected head of the Berlin Philharmonic by its members, where he worked until 2002.
Claudio Abbado was born into a musical family in Milan in 1933 and trained at the Milan Conservatoire before studying under Hans Swarowsky in Vienna
He made his first recording for Deutsche Grammophon in 1967 and his last in 2013.
Claudio Abbado was born into a musical family in Milan in 1933 and trained at the Milan Conservatoire before studying under Hans Swarowsky in Vienna.
His career began at La Scala in 1960 and he went on to become musical director of the famous opera house until 1986, before his work with Vienna’s state opera and the Berlin Philharmonic.
In 1997, Claudio Abbado won a Grammy Award in the best instrumental soloist performance (with orchestra) category.
In 2012, he was voted into the Gramophone Hall of Fame and awarded the conductor prize at the Royal Philharmonic Society (RPS) Music Awards.
The latter prize was given for his concerts with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall in 2011.
Claudio Abbado had suffered health problems for many years, resigning from his Vienna Opera post for health reasons in 1991 and then undergoing stomach cancer surgery in 2000.
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Conductor Daniel Barenboim is stepping down as musical director of La Scala opera house two years early at the beginning of 2015.
Stephane Lissner, superintendent of Milan’s La Scala, called Daniel Barenboim’s departure the “end of an era”.
Daniel Barenboim joined the world-renowned opera house in 2006 before becoming musical director in December 2011.
Unconfirmed reports in Italian media suggested he will be succeeded by Milanese conductor, Riccardo Chailly.
Conductor Daniel Barenboim is stepping down as musical director of La Scala opera house two years early at the beginning of 2015
Stephane Lissner is also leaving La Scala in August 2014 to manage the Paris Opera and will be succeeded by Alexander Pereira, the Austrian artistic director of the Salzburg Festival.
Alexander Pereira previously indicated that he would like an Italian to be the next musical director and Italian media suggested Riccardo Chailly would be his choice.
Israeli-Argentine Daniel Barenboim, 70, will continue to work on his many other projects, including establishing an academy for Israeli and Palestinian musicians and overseeing an academy for young musicians in Berlin, housed in a concert hall built by architect Frank Gehry.
Some of Daniel Barenboim’s commitments at La Scala in 2014 include Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Tsar’s Bride, Cosi Fan Tutte by Mozart and Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra.
Daniel Barenboim will open the 2014-15 season with Fidelio, Beethoven’s only opera.
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