Eliza Mazzucato Young

Eliza Mazzucato Young (July 7, 1846 – March 27, 1937) was an Italian-born American composer, musician, and educator. She wrote Mr. Sampson of Omaha (1888), one of the first operas by a woman to be produced in the United States.

Eliza Mazzucato Young
An older white woman with grey hair dressed back in a bun; she is seen in almost profile, wearing a high-collared dress.
Eliza Mazzucato Young, from an 1894 publication.
Elisa Mazzucato

July 7, 1846
DiedMarch 27, 1937
Beverly Hills, California
NationalityItalian, American
Other namesElisa M. Young

Early lifeEdit

Elisa Mazzucato was born in Milan, the daughter of opera composer Alberto Mazzucato and Teresa Bolza, a daughter of Count Luigi Bolza [it], Austrian police commissioner in Milan.[1][2]

Her father was the director of the conservatory at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan. She studied music with her father, and in London.[1][3][4]


Advertisement for the Youngs' Singing School in Utah, 1885.

Eliza Mazzucato taught at the National Training School of Music in London, before it closed in 1882, and then at the Royal College of Music.[5] She resigned in 1883 when she married one of the students, an American baritone named Bicknell Young. The couple moved to Salt Lake City in 1885, to open a music school,[5] and they performed together in New York City in 1886. By 1895, they were living in Chicago, performing, touring, and teaching at the Chicago Conservatory.[6][7][8]

Young composed the music for the comic opera Mr. Sampson of Omaha (1888),[9][10] one of the first operas by a woman to be produced in the United States; the libretto was by Fred Nye.[11] Sheet music for songs from the opera continued to be published for years after its debut.[12] Other compositions by Young included a one-act opera,The Maiden and the Reaper, and short works for voice, including a song in French, "Le Roi Don Juan",[3] and a setting of Psalm 130.[13] She also wrote pedagogical pieces, such as "Staccato Étude in B".[14][15]

Personal lifeEdit

Eliza Mazzucato married fellow musician Brigham Bicknell Young (1856-1938),[16] a son of Joseph Young and a nephew of Brigham Young, in London in 1883.[17] They had three sons, Arrigo Mazzucato Young (1884-1954, born in England),[18] Hilgard Bicknell Young (1885-1979, born in Utah), and Umberto Young (1887-1965, born in Utah). Despite her husband's family connections in the Mormon community, the couple were adherents to Christian Science from the 1890s.[19] Eliza Mazzucato Young died in Beverly Hills, California in 1937, aged 90 years.[20][21]


  1. ^ a b Tullidge, Edward William (1886). History of Salt Lake City. Salt Lake City: Star Printing Company. pp. 782–783.
  2. ^ Rutherford, Susan (2013). Verdi, Opera, Women. Cambridge University Press. pp. 30, 51. ISBN 9781107043824.
  3. ^ a b Young Folks Library: Music and drama. 1911. pp. 200–201.
  4. ^ McVicker, Mary F. (2016-08-03). Women Opera Composers: Biographies from the 1500s to the 21st Century. McFarland. p. 71. ISBN 9780786495139.
  5. ^ a b "The Art Divine". The Ogden Standard. February 26, 1885. p. 3. Retrieved July 25, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  6. ^ "Handel Hall Concerts". Chicago Tribune. December 29, 1895. p. 30. Retrieved July 25, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ "In an Opening Song Recital". Chicago Tribune. December 1, 1897. p. 8. Retrieved July 25, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  8. ^ "Chicago Conservatory advertisement". Music. 3. November 1892.
  9. ^ "Mr. Sampson", It's Showtime! Sheet Music from Stage and Screen, retrieved 2019-07-25
  10. ^ "Mr. Sampson of Omaha". Opening Night! Opera and Oratorio Premieres, Stanford University. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  11. ^ Kirk, Elise Kuhl (2001). American Opera. University of Illinois Press. p. 110. ISBN 9780252026232.
  12. ^ "A Bulgarian Pin". The Lester S. Levy Music Collection, Johns Hopkins University. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  13. ^ "Numbers by Resident Composers". Chicago Tribune. November 30, 1896. p. 3. Retrieved July 25, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  14. ^ "Editorial Bric-a-brac". Music: A Monthly Magazine Devoted to the Art, Science, Technic and Literature of Music. 11: 282. January 1897.
  15. ^ "Reviews and Notices". Music: A Monthly Magazine, Devoted to the Art, Science, Technic. 11: 108. November 1896.
  16. ^ Hughes, Rupert (April 1898). "American Concert Singers, Part V". Godey's Magazine. 136: 407.
  17. ^ "Bicknell Young C.S.B." Mary Baker Eddy Science Institute. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  18. ^ "Arrigo Mazzucato Young". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. Retrieved 2019-07-25.
  19. ^ Eddy, Mary Baker (1895). Church Manual of the First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts. Christian Science Publishing Society. p. 72.
  20. ^ "Elisa Mazzucato Young". Los Angeles Times. March 29, 1937. p. 20. Retrieved July 25, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  21. ^ "Elisa Mazzucato Young is Dead in California". Chicago Tribune. March 30, 1937. p. 12. Retrieved July 25, 2019 – via Newspapers.com.

External linksEdit