Rolando Panerai



Rolando Panerai (born on October 17, 1924) Italian baritone, particularly associated with the Italian repertory, he enjoyed a long and distinguished career in both comic and dramatic roles.

Rolando Panerai was born in Ciampi Bisenzio, near Florence, Italy. He studied with Frazzi in Florence and Armani and Giulia Tess in Milan. Panerai made his debut as the pharaon in Rossini's Mosè in Egitto at the Teatro di San Carlo of Naples in 1947.

Other important debuts, both in 1951, were as Simon Boccanegra in Simon Boccanegra in Bergamo and as Sharpless in Madama Butterfly at La Scala in Milan. He sang in many rarely performed Verdi opera's on radio broadcast for RAI in 1951 (to commemorate Verdi's 50th death anniversary), such as Giovanna d'Arco, La battaglia di Legnano, and Aroldo.

Later roles included most of the great Verdi baritone roles, particularly as Rigoletto in Rigoletto, The Count of Luna in Il trovatore, Giorgio Germont in La traviata, Marquis of Posa in Don Carlos, Amonasro in Aida, and Falstaff in Falstaff.

He also enjoyed considerable success in comic roles, making a specialty of such roles as: Figaro in Nozze di Figaro, Leporello in Don Giovanni, both Guglielmo and Alfonso in Così fan tutte, roles he often sang at both the Aix-en-Provence and Salzburg festivals, Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, both Belcore and Dulcamara in Elisir d'amore, and Malatesta and the title role in Don Pasquale. Rolando Panerai has more than 150 operas in his repertory.

He possesses a dark and vibrant voice, and has enjoyed a remarkably long and distinguished career singing Germont as recently as the year 2000 in a French televised production of La traviata, next to José Cura and Eteri Gvazava, his voice in very good shape for a man of 76. His acting skills were appreciated by great directors such as Giorgio Strehler, Franco Zeffirelli and Luchino Visconti.

He has been one of the best exponent of Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini for many years, singing the role in Florence as recently as 2006, at the age of 82.

Recently Rolando Panerai has sung at the Paris Opera, in the Staatsoper, Frankfurt and at the Glyndebourne Festival.

Panerai left an impressive discography, often partnering with Maria Callas and Giuseppe di Stefano, as in: Il trovatore, Cavalleria rusticana, Pagliacci and La bohème.

He also recorded a notable Sharpless in Madama Butterfly, opposite Renata Scotto and Carlo Bergonzi, and Germont La traviata, opposite Beverly Sills and Nicolai Gedda, as well as Guglielmo in Cosi fan tutte opposite Elizabeth Schwarzkopf, Nan Merriman, Lisa Otto, Leopold Simoneau, and Sesto Bruscantini in a remarkable 1955 EMI CLASSICS recording with Herbert von Karajan and the Philharmonia Orchestra & Chorus that was remastered in 1999. 

Show more...


Composers' compositions