Maria Callas, Violetta & "The soprano she was frightened of" the great Virginia Zeani

Share this & earn $10
CharlotteinWeimar
Published at : 18 Jan 2021
6529 views

"Virginia Zeani, you are one of the very few sopranos my wife is frightened of." So said Callas's husband Giovanni Battista Meneghini to Virginia Zeani, who told me herself. Why then is Callas so famous and Zeani relatively so little known?

Disclaimer- Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favour of fair use. If for any reason, you deem that a video appearing in this channel violates copyright, please inform us immediately before you submit a claim to YouTube and we will take care to remove it

NB The recordings of Mme Virginia Zeani are mostly from radio broadcasts or private or in-house tapes. They were saved by her fans and later, without her permission, sometimes transferred to CDs by companies who pay her no royalties.

The answer has nothing to do with quality as they were both, in their contrasting ways, magnificent, but rather it concerns prudent career management and commercial recordings. My video is a tribute to both these great singers and a first attempt to redress the balance.

I heard both Maria Callas and Virginia Zeani in their prime, as Violetta, from the gallery of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden. They were both wonderful and easily the most thrilling and memorable sopranos in the Italian repertoire. I could not bear to be deprived of either.

Maria Callas admired and even feared Zeani who, as well as being a fine singer and impressive actress was a stunning beauty. Virginia Zeani in turn greatly admired Callas as a formidable performer whom to this day she describes as "a Lion".

Callas had such precocious natural ability that aged only 18 she sang Tosca and in her twenties would alternate Wagner's Brunnhilde with Bellini's bel canto Elvira. This combination of sublime musicality with vocal recklessness meant at the age of 41 she retired from the operatic stage and in her later concerts was but a shadow of her former self.

By contrast, although only 22 when she made her debut as Violetta, Zeani had the more secure vocal technique which enabled her to sing 69 major roles in a taxing 34 year career. Despite always singing with great intensity and commitment she successfully matured from "lyric soprano with high agility" (her words) to spinto and kept her voice in great shape.

As to fame and a long lasting legacy, at the start of her Italian career Callas was fortunate to marry Meneghini who became her manager and dedicated himself to steering her to world wide recognition through live performances and studio recordings.

Meanwhile Zeani, entirely unaided, had begun to gain international recognition but lacked sound career guidance. Her personal beauty even impeded her progress as many a propositioning conductor or manager was left disappointed and disgruntled.

Zeani's marriage in 1957 to Nicola Rossi Lemeni, who had been Callas's favourite basso, brought her the security of Italian citizenship but blocked her advancement at La Scala. It also marked the end of Rossi Lemeni's Columbia recording contract and he never again made records with Callas. Soon after marriage the imminent birth of her son caused the postponement of both her Metropolitan debut and recording contracts with Decca and DG which once lost were never reinstated. The couple decided to quit Milan and make Rome their home base and as they were never short of engagements they agreed that Zeani would manage all their bookings and they would concentrate on live performances. Recordings, they thought, could wait for another day, but this was a big mistake.

Following her affair with Onassis, Callas became a world famous "celebrity" and her live singing career fell away. But the many wonderful studio recordings she had made assured her continued fame. By contrast, as soon as she left the stage, Zeani was remembered only by those who had heard her live.

However, Zeani had a core following of devotees who had collected recordings of her live performances and little by little these found their way into circulation on specialist label LPs and a cult following was born. With the coming of YouTube hundreds of clips of her singing were released and complete operas and arias are still appearing on CDs. The few studio recordings she did make are widely praised and her complete La traviata for Electrecord, made in Romania, is considered one of the most successful ever prodiced. In 2015 her other studio recordings were gathered together and remastered in a 9 CD set "The Artistry of Virginia Zeani"
Virginia Zeani (Musical Artist)Maria Callas (Musical Artist)Italian Opera

Servietten falten: Bischofsmütze z.B. Ostern oder Hochzeit als Tischdeko - DIY

Servietten falten: Bischofsmütze z.B. Ostern oder Hochzeit als Tischdeko - DIY

(BEST QUALITY) Whitney Houston - All At Once (Live from the 14th Annual American Music Awards, 1987)

(BEST QUALITY) Whitney Houston - All At Once (Live from the 14th Annual American Music Awards, 1987)

What are the Risk Factors for Co Occurring Disorders

What are the Risk Factors for Co Occurring Disorders

Death Has No Dignity | House M.D.

Death Has No Dignity | House M.D.

NOT BY ACCIDENT - Remy Metailler

NOT BY ACCIDENT - Remy Metailler

HOMELESS To RICH Building Our DREAM MANSION In BLOXURG (Roblox)

HOMELESS To RICH Building Our DREAM MANSION In BLOXURG (Roblox)

14 Girl's Secrets And Hacks Guys Don't Know About

14 Girl's Secrets And Hacks Guys Don't Know About

Sp Montiz - Undeniable [Music Video] | GRM Daily

Sp Montiz - Undeniable [Music Video] | GRM Daily

Mehul: 'Audiences were walking out during the last two reels of 'Kites'!'

Mehul: 'Audiences were walking out during the last two reels of 'Kites'!'

sad story which will touch your heart...

sad story which will touch your heart...

A look at the learning plan for private and charter schools

A look at the learning plan for private and charter schools

BIGGEST CASH HUNT WIN OF ALL TIME? $150,000 WIN ON CRAZY TIME!

BIGGEST CASH HUNT WIN OF ALL TIME? $150,000 WIN ON CRAZY TIME!

Jambo The Hairless Chimpanzee Fooling Around

Jambo The Hairless Chimpanzee Fooling Around

Funny Chicken ★ ULTIMATE Funny CHICKEN Compilation (HD) [Funny Pets]

Funny Chicken ★ ULTIMATE Funny CHICKEN Compilation (HD) [Funny Pets]

GTA 5 ONLINE : TOREADOR VS DELUXO (WHICH IS BEST?)

GTA 5 ONLINE : TOREADOR VS DELUXO (WHICH IS BEST?)

An Alternative Pixar Intro

An Alternative Pixar Intro

15 Minute HIIT Metabolism Booster - Total Body and Abs HIIT Workout

15 Minute HIIT Metabolism Booster - Total Body and Abs HIIT Workout

210 is VERY Goldbachy - Numberphile

210 is VERY Goldbachy - Numberphile

HE SURPRISED ME WITH A YACHT!!!

HE SURPRISED ME WITH A YACHT!!!

How to Ensure Your Success - Grant Cardone

How to Ensure Your Success - Grant Cardone

Magical Ways To Attract What You Want - How To Talk To Your Guardian Angel

Magical Ways To Attract What You Want - How To Talk To Your Guardian Angel

A reunion of presidential relatives

A reunion of presidential relatives

My Cat Got Me Pregnant || My Story Animated || This is my story

My Cat Got Me Pregnant || My Story Animated || This is my story

【微辣搞邊科】假如老闆願意完成你一個聖誕願望.....!微辣同事集體向六亳子要求聖誕禮物!?ABBY想要仔!?煮詞人突然向XX表白?他們萬萬想不到一切的背後原來是...|微辣Manner

【微辣搞邊科】假如老闆願意完成你一個聖誕願望.....!微辣同事集體向六亳子要求聖誕禮物!?ABBY想要仔!?煮詞人突然向XX表白?他們萬萬想不到一切的背後原來是...|微辣Manner

The Necessity to Struggle / The Futility of Effort

The Necessity to Struggle / The Futility of Effort

7 Simple Ways ANY GUY Can Look BETTER While Working Out!

7 Simple Ways ANY GUY Can Look BETTER While Working Out!

Learn the most effective dribbles | 5 simple football skills

Learn the most effective dribbles | 5 simple football skills

Space Rider - The ESA answer to the SpaceX Crew Dragon?  Well, it's complicated.

Space Rider - The ESA answer to the SpaceX Crew Dragon? Well, it's complicated.

The Problem with Fire Swords on The Hive... (ft. Evident)

The Problem with Fire Swords on The Hive... (ft. Evident)

Just Trust The Universe - Alan Watts

Just Trust The Universe - Alan Watts

Beware of froth in the market | Avoid these wealth destroying stocks

Beware of froth in the market | Avoid these wealth destroying stocks

How Many Lights on a 15A Circuit Breaker? Calculate Wattage for 15 Amp Circuit & Number of Fixtures

How Many Lights on a 15A Circuit Breaker? Calculate Wattage for 15 Amp Circuit & Number of Fixtures

HEATSEEKER IS PURE CHAOS! (Sidemen Gaming)

HEATSEEKER IS PURE CHAOS! (Sidemen Gaming)

How to Do the Splits for Kids

How to Do the Splits for Kids

How to Cut, Color and Style Your Hair on a Budget

How to Cut, Color and Style Your Hair on a Budget

I Need You To Hurry Up - Dua Lipa vs. Kanye West (Mashup)

I Need You To Hurry Up - Dua Lipa vs. Kanye West (Mashup)

The BEST At Home VAGACIAL *im serious this is life changing*

The BEST At Home VAGACIAL *im serious this is life changing*

How to Value a Stock - P/E Ratio, P/S Ratio, and PEG Ratio

How to Value a Stock - P/E Ratio, P/S Ratio, and PEG Ratio

$kinny - No Beef ft. Belly (Official Video) سكيني - بدون لحم

$kinny - No Beef ft. Belly (Official Video) سكيني - بدون لحم

How to conjugate to intend

How to conjugate to intend

LA Fitness Club Tour

LA Fitness Club Tour

Every Time Captain Man Was A HORRIBLE Boss! | Henry Danger

Every Time Captain Man Was A HORRIBLE Boss! | Henry Danger

How to Use the 3 4 5 Method to Square Up a Wall Perfectly

How to Use the 3 4 5 Method to Square Up a Wall Perfectly

Center Stage With Rehman Azhar | 1 January 2021 | Express News | IG1V

Center Stage With Rehman Azhar | 1 January 2021 | Express News | IG1V

10 Things You Should Do Everyday In 2019 | Healthy Habits To Do Daily!

10 Things You Should Do Everyday In 2019 | Healthy Habits To Do Daily!

WorldView: WHO scientists in Wuhan to investigate coronavirus; Ugandans vote in tense election

WorldView: WHO scientists in Wuhan to investigate coronavirus; Ugandans vote in tense election

Real English: What you need to know if you're going to court

Real English: What you need to know if you're going to court

NOOB vs PRO vs KARMA - Fortnite Funny Moments #47

NOOB vs PRO vs KARMA - Fortnite Funny Moments #47

MoPOP Founders Award 2020 Honoring Alice In Chains

MoPOP Founders Award 2020 Honoring Alice In Chains