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Subject: Re: Opera News Online and OPERA magazine
From: Derek McGovern <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Derek McGovern <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Fri, 25 Nov 2016 11:03:05 -0500

text/plain (51 lines)

Miguel: While it's true that OPERA never reviewed any of Lanza's performances, OPERA 
NEWS certainly did. In the October 1942 edition of OPERA NEWS, the Met's Herbert Graf 
wrote of Lanza was "the find of the [operatic] season" after his performances as Fenton in 
Nicolai's The Merry Wives of Windsor at Tanglewood. He also predicted that the then 21-
year-old Lanza would have no difficulty in one day joining the Met.

The New York Times also published a rave review of Lanza's opening night performance 
as Fenton.

Six years later---after the interruption of World War Two and then Lanza's own decision to 
take time off from performing to study vocal production---he again earned rave reviews 
when he performed under Walter Herbert at the New Orleans Municipal Opera House. No, 
it wasn't the Met, but many great singers thought it a worthy enough venue to perform at.

No doubt the appreciative audiences who heard Lanza sing complete roles at Tanglewood 
and New Orleans would have been puzzled by the assertion from OPERA's spokesperson 
that he "wasn't a bonafide opera singer." Indeed, as musicologist Matthew Boyden has 
pointed out, saying that Lanza---who learned complete operatic roles, recorded and 
performed operatic music throughout his career, and appeared in operas from his late 
teens till his late 20s, both as an amateur and a professional---wasn't an opera singer "is 
a little like claiming that a painter is only ever an artist when his or her work has been 


On Wed, 23 Nov 2016 14:29:24 +0000, Miguel A De Virgilio 
<[log in to unmask]> wrote:
I've been a subscriber to OPERA for the last 40 years. I have a question for you. 
I'm a fan of Mario Lanza and wonder why OPERA never reviewed  one of his 
In 1958 Lanza gave a concert at the Albert Hall and OPERA Didn't " review it !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 
I wrote a letter to the OPERA editor asking why, and his response was "Lanza was not a 
bonafide Opera singer" 
I wrote him back and said "Neither is Bocelli and you reviewed his concert" 
Never got an answer back 
Best regards 
Miguel de Virgilio 

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