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Maria Caniglia

Biography

Born: May 5, 1904; Naples, Italy   Died: April 16, 1979; Rome, Italy  
Regarded by many as having had the most beautiful spinto soprano between the primes of Claudia Muzio and Renata Tebaldi, Maria Caniglia was chosen to record a number of major soprano roles, several of them with Beniamino Gigli. Her generous temperament sometimes led her to dramatic overemphasis and her technique sometimes failed her in the topmost register, but she was always a vivid presence, always committed to giving her all in performance. Read more When Tebaldi and Callas divided La Scala audiences, Caniglia became the Prima donna Assoluta in Rome.

Born to a family from the province of Abruzzi, Caniglia studied at the Naples Conservatory with Agostino Roche, a famous pedagogue who trained many artists, notably mezzo soprano Ebe Stignani, with whom Caniglia would perform and record often. Roche believed that the young soprano was destined for more than lyric roles and, accordingly, trained her to sing the spinto repertory. In 1929, Caniglia was dispatched to La Scala to audition for three prominent conductors: Ettore Panizza, Carlo del Campo, and Gino Marinuzzi. The opinion of each was that she should return in a half-year's time to present a more lyric repertory. At that time, she was engaged, but ironically, from the beginning was given more spinto roles than lyric. Her debut, however, took place in 1930 at Turin's Teatro Regio, where the soprano had already been engaged for a production of Elektra. Singing Chrysothemis to the Elektra of Giulia Tess, she enjoyed a success, but felt overwhelmed by the power of her colleague's performance. When her La Scala contract began in 1931, Caniglia found that she had been assigned only one role, that of Maria in Ildebrando Pizzetti's Lo straniero with the composer conducting. In the aftermath of her performances, she found that she had been scheduled for other productions for the duration of the season. Her next assignment was the premiere of Italo Montemezzi's La notte di Zoraima, a work whose popularity prompted the scheduling of a second run of performances the following year. Several cancellations pushed Caniglia further into the spotlight as she took over leading roles in Mascagni's La maschere and in Wagner's Fliegende Holländer. Her success in the latter opera led to other assignments in the lighter Wagnerian repertory, culminating later in Sieglinde. During her La Scala years, Caniglia sang with the leading Italian conductors of the day, maestri such as Santini, de Sabata, Serafin, Panizza, Ghione, Gui, Marinuzzi, and Guarnieri. As Toscanini had already left the company, she had to wait until her performances as Alice Ford at Salzburg to sing under his direction. In 1951, Caniglia left La Scala, feeling that the discipline that had made it a great company in the 1930s and 1940s had eroded. She subsequently became the leading spinto/dramatic soprano at the Rome Opera. Meanwhile, Caniglia had also enjoyed successes in London, New York, Barcelona, and the theaters in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires. During Covent Garden's 1937 season, critics objected somewhat to Caniglia's unevenness of voice in Tosca, but found her Alice Ford sprightly and full of youthful vigor. New York heard her for only one season following her November 21, 1938, debut as Desdemona. The Italian government's confiscation of artists' passports denied her services to both London and America. Among Caniglia's recordings, Tosca and La forza del destino represent her at her estimable best. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 31 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Label: Bongiovanni   Catalog: 723 Release Date: 11/27/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Maria Caniglia,  Beniamino Gigli,  Ebe Stignani,  Armando Borgioli
    Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra
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  • 2.
    Verdi: Don Carlo
    Label: Cetra   Catalog: 661437 Release Date: 11/13/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Mirto Picchi,  Ebe Stignani,  Maria Caniglia,  Paolo Silveri  ... 
    Conductor:  Fernando Previtali
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra Rome,  Italian Radio Chorus Rome
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  • 3.
    Verdi: La Forza Del Destino / Marinuzzi, Masini, Caniglia, Stignani
    Label: Cetra   Catalog: 61485 Release Date: 08/28/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Ebe Stignani,  Carlo Tagliabue,  Galliano Masini,  Tancredi Pasero  ... 
    Conductor:  Gino Marinuzzi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra Turin,  Italian Radio Chorus Turin
    CD: $11.99
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  • 4.
    Voices Of Italian Opera
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 40509 Release Date: 07/31/2012   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Vincenzo Bellini,  Gaetano Donizetti,  Gioachino Rossini,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Callas,  Edita Gruberova,  Margherita Carosio,  Francesco Meli  ... 
    Conductor:  Tullio Serafin,  Kurt Eichhorn,  Anatole Fistoulari,  Evelino Pidò  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Munich Radio Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $19.99
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  • 5.
    Verdi: Aida / Beniamino Gigli, Maria Caniglia, Ebe Stignani, Lia Serafini
    Label: Bel Canto Society   Catalog: 54 Release Date: 11/10/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Beniamino Gigli,  Gino Bechi,  Maria Caniglia,  Ebe Stignani  ... 
    Conductor:  Tullio Serafin
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  • 6.
    The Record of Singing - The Very Best of Vols 1-4
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 28956 Release Date: 03/10/2009   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Arthur Sullivan,  Giacomo Puccini,  Jacques Offenbach  ... 
    Performer:  Marian Anderson,  Kosti Vehanen,  Dame Clara Butt,  Richard Crooks  ... 
    Conductor:  Clemens Schmalstich,  Clarence Raybould,  Georges Lauweryns,  Nat Finston  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin State Opera Orchestra,  Orchestra,  Pasdeloup Concert Association Orchestra  ... 
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  • 7.
    Sopranos In The Grand Tradition / Dal Monte, Flagstad, Et Al
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 67179 Release Date: 09/24/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini,  Vincenzo Bellini,  Amilcare Ponchielli,  Arrigo Boito  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Zamboni,  Rosetta Pampanini,  Toti Dal Monte,  Gina Cigna  ... 
    Conductor:  Lorenzo Molajoli,  Carlo Sabajno,  Franco Ghione,  Oliviero de Fabritiis  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Rome Opera Teatro Reale Orchestra  ... 
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  • 8.
    Mad About Opera (Follie Per L?opera) / Various / (Sub B&w)
    Label: Bel Canto Society   Catalog: 493 Release Date: 11/22/2005  
    Composer:  Umberto Giordano,  Vincenzo Bellini,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Rodolfo Falvo  ... 
    Performer:  Beniamino Gigli,  Maria Caniglia,  Tito Gobbi,  Tito Schipa  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Studio Orchestra
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  • 9.
    Puccini: Tosca / De Fabritiis, Corelli, Duval
    Label: Hardy Classics   Catalog: 4015 Release Date: 08/10/2004  
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini
    Performer:  Franco Corelli,  Maria Caniglia,  Giangiacomo Guelfi
    Conductor:  Oliviero de Fabritiis
    On sale! $39.95
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  • 10.
    The Very Best Of Beniamino Gigli
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 85093 Release Date: 09/02/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Giacomo Puccini,  Gaetano Donizetti  ... 
    Performer:  Beniamino Gigli,  Gino Bechi,  Gino Conti,  Maria Caniglia  ... 
    Conductor:  Walter Goehr,  Carlo Sabajno,  Franco Ghione,  Stanford Robinson  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Chorus  ... 
    CD: $17.99
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  • 11.
    Great Voices Of The Past - The Sopranos
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 8013 Release Date: 07/01/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Georges Bizet,  Giacomo Puccini,  Christoph W. Gluck  ... 
    Performer:  Claudia Muzio,  Conchita Supervia,  Magda [Soprano Vocal] Olivero,  Rosa Ponselle  ... 
    Conductor:  Ugo Tansini,  Fritz Stiedry,  Hector Panizza,  Richard Kraus  ... 
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  • 12.
    Great Voices Of The Past - Verdi's Masterworks Vol 2
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 8014 Release Date: 07/01/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Tancredi Pasero,  Tito Schipa,  Nina Garelli,  Elvino Ventura  ... 
    Conductor:  Rosario Bourdon,  Vittorio Gui,  Carlo Sabajno,  Herbert Sandberg  ... 
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  • 13.
    Label: Hardy Classics   Catalog: 7001 Release Date: 06/03/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Amelita Galli-Curci,  Maria Caniglia,  Ebe Stignani,  Carlo Tagliabue  ... 
    On sale! $29.98
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  • 14.
    Verdi: Falstaff, Etc / De Sabata, Serafin,Stabile, Et Al
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 1104 Release Date: 08/27/2002   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Piero Biasini,  Maria Caniglia,  Francesco Merli,  Beniamino Gigli  ... 
    Conductor:  Victor De Sabata,  Tullio Serafin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Florence Teatro Comunale Orchestra,  Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $29.99
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  • 15.
    Debut Series - Simionato - My First Record
    Label: Fono Enterprise   Catalog: 1060 Release Date: 07/02/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jules Massenet,  Umberto Giordano,  Francesco Paolo Neglia,  Camille Saint-Saëns  ... 
    Performer:  Ferruccio Tagliavini,  Giulietta Simionato,  Gino Bechi,  Gino Conti  ... 
    Conductor:  Franco Capuana,  Oliviero de Fabritiis,  Argeo Quadri,  Pietro Mascagni
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Chorus,  Milan Symphony Orchestra
    On sale! $18.98
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  • 16.
    Puccini's Masterworks / Bjorling, Gigli, Melba, Muzio, Et Al
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 8005 Release Date: 05/07/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini
    Performer:  Nellie Melba,  Mario Del Monaco,  John McCormack,  Giuseppe Di Stefano  ... 
    On sale! $13.98
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  • 17.
    Verdi: Il Trovatore - Highlights;  Boito, Donizetti, Et Al
    Label: Grand Tier   Catalog: 4794 Release Date: 04/02/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Francesco Cilèa,  Amilcare Ponchielli,  Gaetano Donizetti  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Caniglia,  Paolo Silveri,  Beniamino Gigli,  Fedora Barbieri
    Conductor:  Oliviero de Fabritiis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  Chorus
    On sale! $19.98
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  • 18.
    Italian Singers Of Wagner Vol 2 / Del Monaco, Pertile, Et Al
    Label: Idi   Catalog: 6354 Release Date: 06/26/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Giuseppe Modesti,  Africo Baldelli,  Maria Callas,  Luigi Rossi-Morelli  ... 
    Conductor:  Vittorio Gui,  Lorenzo Molajoli,  Carlo Sabajno,  Argeo Quadri  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Italian Radio Chorus Rome,  Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra Rome,  Orchestra  ... 
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  • 19.
    Opera Arias / Beniamino Gigli
    Label: Fono Enterprise   Catalog: 1003 Release Date: 06/05/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Maria Caniglia,  Ebe Stignani,  Beniamino Gigli,  Gino Bechi  ... 
    Conductor:  Tullio Serafin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rome Opera House Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Chorus,  Orchestra
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  • 20.
    Verdi: Aida / Serafin, Tajo, Stignani, Caniglia, Et Al
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 20006 Release Date: 04/24/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Ebe Stignani,  Tancredi Pasero,  Beniamino Gigli,  Italo Tajo  ... 
    Conductor:  Tullio Serafin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rome Opera House Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Chorus
    On sale! $27.98
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  • 21.
    Verdi: Un Ballo In Maschera / Serafin, Gigli, Bechi, Et Al
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 20005 Release Date: 02/27/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Maria Caniglia,  Fedora Barbieri,  Elda Ribetti,  Tancredi Pasero  ... 
    Conductor:  Tullio Serafin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rome Opera House Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Chorus
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  • 22.
    Verdi: Requiem / Serafin, Gigli, Caniglia, Stignani, Et Al
    Label: Emi Classics Références   Catalog: 67486 Release Date: 01/09/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Maria Caniglia,  Ebe Stignani,  Beniamino Gigli,  Ezio Pinza
    Conductor:  Tullio Serafin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rome Opera House Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Chorus
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  • 23.
    Puccini: Tosca / De Fabritiis, Gigli, Caniglia, Et Al
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 9008 Release Date: 09/26/2000   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini
    Performer:  Nino Mazziotti,  Giulio Tomei,  Anna Marcangeli,  Gino Conti  ... 
    Conductor:  Oliviero de Fabritiis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rome Opera House Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Chorus
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  • 24.
    Verdi: La Forza Del Destino / Marinuzzi, Caniglia, Et Al
    Label: Opera D'oro   Catalog: 9007 Release Date: 09/26/2000   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi
    Performer:  Ebe Stignani,  Galliano Masini,  Tancredi Pasero,  Saturno Meletti  ... 
    Conductor:  Gino Marinuzzi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra Turin,  Italian Radio Chorus Turin
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  • 25.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Tito Gobbi
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89194 Release Date: 07/25/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ermenegildo Ruccione,  Gioachino Rossini,  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Tito Gobbi,  Gino Bechi,  Maria Caniglia
    On sale! $22.98
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