ISBN 978-88-99176-99-0    2020  109 pp   Euro 14

Augusto Brogi was born  in the same year as Emma Albani however unlike Albani he regrettably didn’t leave any recorded mementos of his voice, though apparently test recordings were made. “ Whoever wants to hear my voice, should come to the theatre”. Obviously one of the reasons why in spite of a remarkable career of 30 years he is hardly known today by opera aficionados. No entrance in Kutsch Riemens for instance.

Yet this recently published book by Maurizio Sessa saves the artist from total oblibion. Sessa offers a concise yet detailed biography unearthing some interesting anecdotes involving Toscanini and Giulio Ridordi and an astonishing wealth of memorabilia including more than 80 impressive photographs of very high quality on high quality paper.

Brogi belonged to that category of baritones (Melchior, Vinay, Bergonzi etc) who changed into tenors at a certain moment in their careers. After 15 years as a baritone the turning point came when he was called to interpret Iago in Verdi’s Otello (1887) but for some reason he had more feeling for the title role (see cover photo) and subsequently he changed to the tenor fach for another 15 years.

Besides Italy Brogi sang all over Europa : Paris, Vienna, St. Petersburg, Odessa, Madrid, Barcelona, Budapest, Stockholm, Copenhagen…

He died in Florence in 1917 where he had founded a singing school.

His nephew was the composer Renato Brogi (1873-1924) composer of operas and operettas but now mainly known for his famous “Visione Veneziana” .

Click here for the book presentation (Italian only)

Rudi van den Bulck, June 2021