Gianni Poggi

Gianni Poggi

Gianni Poggi (October 4, 1921 – December 16, 1989) was an Italian tenor, particularly associated with the Italian repertory.


Born in Piacenza, Poggi studied first in Bologna with soprano Valeria Manna, and later in Milan with baritone Emilio Ghirardini. He made his debut in Palermo, as Rodolfo, in 1947. He first sang at La Scala in 1948 and appeared there until 1965, his roles included: Riccardo, Enzo, Fernando, Edgardo, Duca di Mantua, Alfredo, Cavaradossi, etc.

He also sang at all the major opera houses throughout Italy, notably in Florence in 1955, in a revival of Donizetti's Dom Sebastien. He portrayed the role of Lohengrin at Arena of Verona in 1949 and in his home town Piacenza in 1963 (both sung in Italian).

Poggi made his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in 1955, in Rigoletto, opposite Robert Merrill and Roberta Peters. He returned for further performances in 1957: Rigoletto again (now with Leonard Warren), Tosca (opposite Antonietta Stella and Walter Cassel, conducted by Dimitri Mitropoulos), La bohème (with Licia Albanese and Ettore Bastianini, conducted by Thomas Schippers), Lucia di Lammermoor (with Lily Pons), La traviata (opposite Renata Tebaldi), and La Gioconda (with Zinka Milanov, Leonard Warren, Cesare Siepi and Regina Resnik).

He was a regular guest at the Vienna State Opera from 1959 to 1964, also appearing at the Berlin State Opera and Monte Carlo Opera. He retired from the stage in 1969, his last role being Faust of Boito's Mefistofele.

Poggi had a fine spinto tenor voice, occasionally inclined to hardness, enabling him to sing both lyric and dramatic roles.


Studio recordingsEdit

Selected live performancesEdit


  • Puccini: Tosca (Tebaldi, Guelfi; Basile) 1961 [live-Tokio] VAI
  • Verdi: Rigoletto (Protti, Tucci; Basile) 1961 [live-Tokio] VAI