Luciano Della Pergola

Luciano Della Pergola. Tenor, teacher, producer, b Bucharest 23 Jun 1910, of Italian parents, naturalized Canadian 1961, d Montreal 13 May 1991.

Della Pergola, Luciano

Luciano Della Pergola. Tenor, teacher, producer, b Bucharest 23 Jun 1910, of Italian parents, naturalized Canadian 1961, d Montreal 13 May 1991. The son of the tenor Alberto Della Pergola, who was one of the founders of the Bucharest Opera, he studied with his father at the Bucharest Royal Academy of Music. In 1931, the year of his graduation, he made his operatic debut as Spoletta in Tosca and began to teach at the academy. One of his pupils, Edith Leb, became his wife in 1935. On the death of his father, Luciano and his wife founded the Alberto Della Pergola Cons, a private institution where they taught 1942-7. He made his Milan debut at the Teatro alla Scala during the 1947-8 season as the Shepherd in Tristan und Isolde. He joined the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples and sang there 1948-51 before returning to La Scala, where, 1951-5, he sang many roles in the standard repertoire and appeared in premieres of works by Pizzetti, Liebermann, and Milhaud, among others. He also sang in other Italian cities. Arriving in Canada in 1955, he settled in Montreal and taught at McGill University until his retirement in 1989 when he was named professor emeritus. He founded the McGill Opera Studio in 1956 and directed it with Edith Della Pergola until 1977, after which time he continued to direct most of the productions. Among his pupils were Allan Fine, Gina Fiordaliso, Joan Patenaude, and Mariana Paunova.

About 1950, Della Pergola took part in a recording of Mascagni's L'Amico Fritz (2-Celebrity Golden Age of Opera EJS-355).and in 1955 he sang the role of Prunier in a recording of Puccini's La Rondine (2-Col Entre EL-12). With Maria Callas, he recorded two Verdi operas: Nabucco (Abdallo) in 1949 (3-Turnabout THS-65131/3-Cetra Opera Live LO-16) and Macbeth (Malcolm) in 1952 (3-Turnabout THS-651311/3-Cetra Opera Live LO-10).