Artist Profile: Italian Tenor Giuseppe Giacomini

By David Salazar

Born on Sept. 7, 1940, Giuseppe Giacomini would go on to become one of the great Italian tenors of the 20th century.

He had some solid success with song competitions prior to his professional debut in 1966 in Vercelli. In 1969, he was also performing around Italy, before finally making his international debut in 1970 in Berlin. Debuts in Lisbon, Barcelona, Vienna, and Munich would follow between 1971 and 1973, with an American debut in Buenos Aires coming in 1974.

He returned to Italy to triumph at the major houses in Milan, Turin, and Rome, among others. He made his U.S. debut in 1975 with his Met Opera debut coming in 1976. His Royal Opera House debut in London would elude him until 1980.

His career was filled with many unique milestones, including the world premiere of “La Lupa,” and a performance of Des Grieux at the 100th-anniversary performance of “Manon Lescaut.”He sang for the Royal Family, sang for Gorbachev, performed in a historic “Aida” in Cairo and sang in “Turandot” at the opening of Olympic games in Seoul in 1988.

He was a recipient of the title of Kammersänger in Vienna, the Gold Viotti, the Giovanni Zenatello Prize, the C.A.Capelli Prize, the Gold Mascagni, Giovanni Martinelli Prize, and is also Commendatore of the Ordine di San Gregorio Magno.

Signature Roles

Giacomini was a renowned interpreter of the Italian repertoire, dominating the works of Verdi and Puccini. He sang everything from “Tosca” to “La Fanciulla del West” to “Don Carlo” to “La Forza del Destino,” his interpretations noted for his vocal power and brilliance. These two composers carried him to great fame and success, remaining his calling cards at his major debuts.

Read More on Giacomini

His Career Milestones

Watch and Listen

Here is an excerpt from Puccini’s “La Fanciulla del West.”

And here is a look at “E lucevan le stelle” from Tosca.”

And here he is as a younger singer.


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