Umberto Giordano

Umberto Giordano

Birth
Foggia, Provincia di Foggia, Puglia, Italy
Death 12 Nov 1948 (aged 81)
Milan, Città Metropolitana di Milano, Lombardia, Italy
Burial Milan, Città Metropolitana di Milano, Lombardia, Italy
Memorial ID 22434222 · View Source
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Composer. A leader of the "verismo", or "realistic" movement of Italian opera. His music is notable for its vigorous melodies and dramatic effectiveness. He is best known for "Andrea Chenier" (1896). Giordano was born in Foggia, Italy. He became a musician against his father's wishes and studied rather erratically at the Naples Conservatory between 1880 and 1890, supporting himself as a stagehand. In 1889 he entered a competition for a one-act opera sponsored by the publisher Sonzogno; he lost to Mascagni's landmark "Cavalleria Rusticana", but was deemed promising enough to receive a contract. His first official stage work, "Mala Vita" (1892), provoked a riot with its grim story of prostitution and his second, "Regina Diaz" (1894), closed after two performances. Only Mascagni's intervention persuaded Sonzogno to give the composer one more chance. The result was Giordano's masterpiece, "Andrea Chenier". Based on the life of the 18th Century French poet, who was guillotined during the Reign of Terror, it immediately entered the world repertory and has never left it. Its arias "Un di all'azzurro spazio", "Si, fui soldato", "Come un bel di di maggio", and "La mama morta" are still popular recital pieces. He had another smash with "Fedora" (1898), which brought stardom to an unknown tenor, Enrico Caruso. Giordano later attributed the singer's success to his personal coaching in vocal technique, claiming "I made a new Caruso out of him". Of his seven other operas only "Siberia" (1903) and the comedy "Il Re" (1929) enjoyed fleeting popularity. He died in Milan. Fascinated with recording technology, Giordano was a co-founder of the Discoteca di Stato, Italy's principal archive of historical recordings. A theatre and a square in his native Foggia are named for him.

Bio by: Bobb Edwards


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bobb Edwards
  • Added: 24 Oct 2007
  • Find A Grave Memorial 22434222
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Umberto Giordano (28 Aug 1867–12 Nov 1948), Find A Grave Memorial no. 22434222, citing Cimitero Monumentale di Milano, Milan, Città Metropolitana di Milano, Lombardia, Italy ; Maintained by Find A Grave .