Sciutti, Graziella

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1927-04-17
Death 2001-04-09
Italians
Italian

Biographical notes:

Graziella Sciutti (1927-2001) was an Italian soprano vocalist and opera director. Born in Turin, she studied at the Santa Cecilia Conservatory in Rome. During her student years, she was a soloist in a performance of Bach's St. Matthew Passion, conducted by Herbert von Karajan. She made her formal debut at the Aix-en-Provence Festival in 1951 as Lucy in Gian-Carlo Menotti's The Telephone, and she continued to perform at that festival for many years. Three of the Mozart roles she performed there became signature pieces for her: Susanna in La Nozze di Figaro, Despina in Così Fan Tutte, and Zerlina in Don Giovanni.

She also created the title role of Henri Sauguet's Caprices de Marianne at Aix-en-Provence in 1954, the same year she made her Glyndebourne Festival debut as Rosina in Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Rossini). She sang Carolina in Cimarosa's Il Matrimonio Segreto in the inaugural performances of the Piccola Scala, in Milan, where she went on to sing a broad repertory that included roles in Piccini's Buona Figliuola, Donizetti's Don Pasquale, Le Comte Ory (Rossini), and Paisiello's Nina Pazza per Amore.

Sciutti made her British debut at Covent Garden in 1956, and her American debut at the San Francisco Opera in 1961. She worked with the Vienna State Opera for several years, where her most successful roles were in Mozart operas and as Nanetta in a Luchino Visconti production of Verdi's Falstaff. She also worked with the Salzburg Festival for two decades.

In 1977, Sciutti sang in and directed a production of Poulenc's Voix Humaine at the Glyndebourne Festival, foreshadowing her move away from performance to opera direction. She staged productions of Le Nozze di Figaro and Elisir d'Amore (Donizetti) at the Canadian Opera, and in 1983 she made her New York directing debut with a highly praised production of Puccini's La Bohème at the Juilliard School. In 1984, she revised Colin Graham's production of Così Fan Tutte at the Metropolitan Opera. Her 1995 staging of La Bohème at the New York City Opera won an Emmy Award after it was broadcast as part of the Live From Lincoln Center series in 1997.

Sciutti was also a pedagogue, teaching at the Royal College of Music in London and giving master classes at the Lyric Center of Chicago, the Juilliard School, and the Merola Opera Program at the San Francisco Opera.

Source: Kozinn, Alan. "Graziella Sciutti, 73, Soprano and Director." The New York Times, April 14, 2001: C7.

From the guide to the Graziella Sciutti collection, 1950-1995, (The New York Public Library. Music Division.)

Epithet: Italian singer

British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue : Person : Description : ark:/81055/vdc_100000000210.0x000097

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