Obituary: Italian Composer and Conductor Azio Corghi Dies, Aged 85

By Logan Martell

Italian composer Azio Corghi has passed away at the age of 85. He is remembered for his body of operas, chamber, and orchestral works.

Born in Cirie on March 9, 1937, Corghi studied piano at the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory of Turin under Mario Zanfi before going on to study composition, choral music, and conducting at the Milan Conservatory. After winning the Ricordi composition competition for his “Intavolature” in 1967, Corghi took a position teaching at the Turin conservatory that same year; he would hold similar position with the Milan and Parma Conservatories, the Accademia Musicale Chigiana, the Perosi Academy and the Accademia Filarmonica di Bologna.

Following the preparation of a critical edition of Rossini’s “L’italiana in Algeri” for the Pesaro Festival, Corghi premiered his first opera, Gargantua,” at the Teatro Regio in 1984, based upon the novel by Rabelais. Subsequent operas include “Blimunda,” which premiered during La Scala’s 89/90 season, “Divara – Wasser und Blut,” “Tat’jana,” and more.

In 1994, Corghi was named a Fellow of the Sant Cecilia National Academy in Rome, and a Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic in 2005.