(Born on April 22, 1935)
"The mezzo for all seasons" Fiorenza Cossotto is considered by many to be one of the greatest mezzos of the 20th century... (and the writer of this bio particularly adores her!)
She achieved fame and recognition for her portrayals of Santuzza, Delilah, Carmen, Amneris, Azucena predominantly throughout the opera houses of Europe, plus she was much recorded on full opera sets during the sixties and seventies with nearly every great tenor of the time.
Her career followed at the time when Barbieri's and Simionato's were in decine.
Blessed with a powerful voice that had a very "Italianate edge" to it, and a stage presence that demanded attention, la Cosotto could always be relied upon to turn in a top quality performance, frequently leaving audiences with their ears ringing.
Her "big acting" endeared her to her audiences and she never failed to command attention. There was a legendary spat between her and Maria Callas when it was reported Fiorenza annoyed Maria by holding a note too long in a performance- but Fiorenza always denied it saying she and Maria remained best of friends.
There is a very interesting recording of her Delilah at the Paris Opera- which is testament to the sheer authority she commanded in this role, despite the fact it is usually considered a vehicle for a richer more mellow voice.
Ah Fiorenza! Still my favourite Azucena, Amneris and Santuzza! :)
Fiorenza Cossotto is one of the featured stars on our "Legends" product range.