Franco Corelli interviewed on "Opera Fanatic," March 30, 1991

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Franco Corelli interviewed on "Opera Fanatic," March 30, 1991
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On March 30, 1991, Franco was interviewed by Stefan Zucker on the radio show "Opera Fanatic." Below are topics discussed. You can purchase the Interview at the  Bel Canto Society Store.

Stefan Zucker, Host

The three singers who influenced Corelli most were Del Monaco and Lauri Volpi for emission and Pertile for interpretation. (Franco once told me, "I copied my interpretation of 'Ah sì! ben mio' and the fourth act of  Carmen  from Pertile." Listening to this program you get to share Franco's perceptions of Pertile's white-hot, pathos-scented and painterly art.

Every singer goes out of tune from time to time unintentionally. But it's difficult to do so on purpose. In this except, to demonstrate Pertile's tendency to sharp, Corelli sings the climax of the "Flower Song" an octave down and causes the highest note to drift upward slightly--a minor feat of virtuosity. (At this point in time Corelli still could sing beautifully, but that was not his intention here. Instead it was to excuse Pertile's sharping because it resulted from passion.)

Although this example is in Italian with me translating, Franco speaks more English on this program than usual.

The noises heard intermittently during the March 30, 1991 interview leaked into WKCR's studio from an adjacent auditorium and were picked up by the mikes. There is no way of both eliminating these noises and preserving our discussion.


1. Total Interview Time: 2 hours, 12 minutes
2. Pertile's early history
3. Lohengrin  selections
4. Was Pertile a cripple?
5. Did you ever consider singing Wagner?
6. A dry voice but legato, diction, warmth and sensibility
7. Sì, pel ciel, with Benvenuto Franci, 1928
8. Bernardo De Muro
9. Ballo  selections
10. The laugh in È scherzo od è follia
11. Quando le sere al placido, 1927
12. Studio vs. live recordings
13. Tosca
14. Anglo-Saxon vs. Italian taste
15. Chris Merritt and Edita Gruberova in  I puritani
16. Pertile vs. Caruso
17. Corelli's vibrato
18. Corelli's vocal problems at the beginning of his career
19. Pertile's vibrato vs. Giovanni Martinelli's  voce fissa
20. Chris Merritt
21. Corelli practices  Puritani
22. Corelli's high Ds in  Poliuto
23. Corelli broke on an A-flat on an EMI  Norma
24. Pertile's masque placement
25. Corelli's cancellations
26. Three arias from  Manon Lescaut
27. Vesti la giubba
28. Similarities between Corelli and Pertile
29. "Loretta esci" (Loretta, get out)
30. Vieni (Denza) 1927
31. La mia sposa sarà la mia bandiera (Rotoli) 1927
32. L'ultima canzone (Tosti) 1927
33. The fight between Miguel Fleta and Pertile
34. Making allowances for false intonation
35. Apri la tua finestra, from Iris (Mascagni) 1920
36. Did Corelli's diminuendo involve falsetto?


Franco Corelli Photos