Artist Profile: Alessandro Corbelli, One of the Great Comic Baritones Of the Late 20th Century

By David Salazar

Comedy is often said to be much harder than tragedy. Of course, this would posit that for any artist, making a career out of the former is a truly treasured gift.

Baritone Alessandro Corbelli, born on Sept. 21, 1952, has this very gift.

The baritone was born in Turin and studied with legendary artist Giuseppe Valdengo. While his debut as Monterrone in “Rigoletto” in 1973 certainly didn’t predict where his voice would go, it was a major start for the singer. From there, he became a major fixture in Italy, becoming Riccardo Muti’s baritone-of-choice for Da Ponte / Mozart’s operas.

He has had a solid international career, appearing at the Royal Opera House and Met prominently since his debuts in 1988 and 1997, respectively.

Signature Roles

Corbelli is a master of the buffo repertory, his career dominated by the comic. He’s a major champion of the bel canto and has won major acclaim singing the operas of Donizetti and Rossini.

One of his finest interpretations, however, does not come from that period, but much later – the title role in Puccini’s “Gianni Schicchi.” His interpretation of the role at the Met Opera a few years back won him major accolades. He has also done well in the operas of Mozart.

Read More on Corbelli

Rare Operas He took On

Watch and Listen

Here he is in one of his major roles in “La Cenerentola.”

Check out this masterclass.


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