Opera Daily 🎶 — Goodbye to Renata Scotto
This week's Opera Daily features Soprano Renata Scotto who left us on August 16, 2023
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Welcome back to Opera Daily, dear readers.
My pause was longer than anticipated, and for that, I apologize.
Sometimes, it’s important to step back from what we are doing, especially when things begin to feel routine or automatic, to understand what it means to us. I've missed you. I've missed this connection. And I am happy to be back. Thank you for your patience and for staying tuned.
As we reconnect today, it’s with a heavy heart that we must acknowledge the passing of the iconic Soprano Renata Scotto on August 16, 2023.
People who had the pleasure of hearing her live or through recordings would often remark on the authentic, genuine emotion in her voice — its ability to tell a story, and to connect with listeners in a profoundly intimate way.
Her voice had a distinctive timbre, a combination of warmth and brightness, which made her stand out among other sopranos.
What do you think?
🎧 Listening Example: (5 minute listen): Soprano Renata Scotto singing “Prendi, per me sei libero” from Gaetano Donizetti’s L’elisir d'amore, 1967.
That first note, wow.
Born in Savona, Italy, in 1934, Scotto began her journey in the world of opera at the Teatro Nuovo in Milan at 18, singing Verdi's La Traviata. She quickly made a name for herself with her voice, technique, and deep emotional connection to her roles. Her performances at the world’s most famous opera houses, from La Scala to the Metropolitan Opera, made her a household name among opera fans and beyond. In a 1953 performance of La Wally at La Scala, Scotto was called back for 15 curtain calls.
🎧 Listening Example: (5 minute listen): Soprano Renata Scotto singing “Sola, perduta, abbandonata” from Puccini’s Manon Lescaut
Scotto’s repertoire was vast, spanning from the heroines of Puccini and Verdi to the complex characters in lesser-performed operas. Not only was she a phenomenal singer, but after she retired from singing in 2002, she dedicated herself to directing and teaching, further establishing her legacy in the opera world.
Her loss is deeply felt, but we remain grateful for the mark she left on the art form we so dearly love.
May her voice soar through the heavens today.
Thank you for reading (and listening),
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