Anita Cerquetti

Anita Cerquetti

Birth
Montecosaro, Provincia di Macerata, Marche, Italy
Death 11 Oct 2014 (aged 83)
Perugia, Provincia di Perugia, Umbria, Italy
Burial Fabriano, Provincia di Ancona, Marche, Italy
Memorial ID 137128641 · View Source
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Opera Singer. A dramatic soprano, she is remembered for her short but significant career in the major venues of Italy. Raised in western central Italy, she took to music early and studied violin for some time before receiving a single year of voice training at the Conservatory of Perugia and making her 1949 professional bow in a poorly received concert. After two more years of education, she made her 1951 operatic debut at Spoleto as the title lead of Verdi's "Aida". For the next decade she headlined at Florence and elsewhere, her roles including Elena in Verdi's "I Vespri Siciliani", the title lead of Ponchielli's "La Gioconda", Elvira from Verdi's "Ernani", Elcia of Rossini's "Moses in Egypt", Mathilde in the same composer's "William Tell", and Elisabeth from Verdi's "Don Carlos". Seldom heard outside her native land, she did earn praise as Amelia in 1955 Lyric Opera of Chicago performances of Verdi's "Un Ballo in Maschera" conducted by Maestro Tullio Serafin. In January of 1958 Anita found herself at the center of one of opera's legendary juicy stories; during a successful Teatro San Carlo, Naples, run as the title Druid Priestess of Vincenzo Bellini's "Norma" she was called upon for the same role by the Rome Opera following a meltdown by the notoriously childish and unreliable Maria Callas. She took the assignment and earned acclaim, but the strain of both the commute and of frequent performances in an extremely demanding work damaged her voice leading to a gradual withdrawal from the stage, though later in 1958 she did bow at La Scala Milano as Abigaile in Verdi's "Nabucco". Anita last sang in public in a 1961 recital at Amsterdam's Concertgebrouw, then due to an ill-defined combination of health problems and family obligations simply quit and disappeared. She spent the next decades in Rome and Perugia, did not grant interviews until years later, and died of long-standing heart disease. Her 'official' recorded legacy, consisting of a recital disc and a complete "La Gioconda", is thin but pirates are available, among them the Rome "Norma" and a "Don Carlos".

Bio by: Bob Hufford


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bob Hufford
  • Added: 11 Oct 2014
  • Find A Grave Memorial 137128641
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Anita Cerquetti (13 Apr 1931–11 Oct 2014), Find A Grave Memorial no. 137128641, citing Cimitero delle Cortine, Fabriano, Provincia di Ancona, Marche, Italy ; Maintained by Find A Grave .