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Renato Zanelli

Like lots of the great Otellos (including Ramon Vinay and Plácido Domingo), Zanelli began his career like a baritone and progressed into a tenor through the early years of his career. Throughout his profession, he maintained a richness of timbre that offered him well in dramatic jobs, and the protected bottom records that helped make him “the brand new Tamagno,” especially as Otello. His performing was as acclaimed as his performing, and he previously an especially commanding stage existence, well-suited for heroic jobs. He researched privately with Angelo Querenz and produced his opera debut in Santiago as Valentin in Gounod’s Faust in 1915. He implemented this along with his Met debut as Amonasro in Verdi’s Aida in 1919, and in 1923, carrying out a recommendation from Arturo Toscanini, visited Italy where he researched to sing being a tenor. His debut being a tenor is at Naples as Raoul in Meyerbeer’s Les Hugenots, and he continuing to sing lyric jobs until recognizing that his tone of voice was a dramatic tenor. He researched Otello under Leopoldo Nugnone, and sang the function for the very first time in Turin in 1926, duplicating it for his 1928 London debut. In 1930, he made an appearance in the globe premiere of Pizzetti’s Lo Straniero, and produced his La Scala debut in 1932 as Otello. He was also adding Wagner functions to his repertoire, focused around the even more lyrical Lohengrin, Siegmund, and Tristan. During this time period, he had been fighting malignancy, sang his last Otello in 1933, and passed away in 1935. His sibling was the mentioned baritone Carlo Morelli (who mentored Domingo in his changeover to tenor).

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