Obituary: Italian Soprano Orianna Santunione Dies at 89

By Francisco Salazar

On Dec. 16, 2023, Soprano Orianna Santunione died at the age of 89.

Born on Sept. 1, 1934, the Italian soprano was known for her Italian lyric and spinto repertoire and was widely recognized in Italy. She went on to perform at the Teatro alla Scala and Arena di Verona and internationally was known for her performances at the Paris Opera. She also sang at The Dallas Opera and Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.

Santunione career peak was during the 1960-1970s and performed such roles as Amelia in “Un Ballo in Maschera” and “Simon Boccanegra,” Elisabetta de Valois in “Don Carlo,” the title role of Aida, Leonora in “Il Trovatore,” the title role of “Tosca,” Minnie in “La Fanciulla del West,” the title role of Medea, Nedda in “Pagliacci,”  Maddalena in “Andrea Chénier,” and the title role of “La Gioconda,” among others.