Franz Xaver Battisti

Battisti was born in Bozen (Bolzano) on December 21st, 1865. He studied chemistry first in Graz, then in Vienna. While in Vienna, he took voice lessons with the bass Rokitansky. He finally decided that singing was more interesting than chemistry. He made his debut in Trier on October 12th, 1893 as Lyonel.

He moved to Zürich, then to Düsseldorf in 1895 where he was a lyric tenor. In 1897 he sang in Bremen. In 1898 Max Hofpaur called him to the Theater des Westen in Berlin. On September 17th, Battisti sang Manrico, and immediately in two Berlin first nights: Evgenij Onegin (September 22nd) and Streik der Schmiede (role: Colbert, composer: Beer) on September 29th.

While in Berlin, the director of the opera in Hannover, Bruno Lepel-Gnitz, heard him and offered to pay for additional training in Italy with Alberto Sylva and to hire him in case of success. Battisti stopped singing for one year. He restarted in 1900, singing again Lyonel, Raoul and Radames in Hannover. Despite success in the "jugendliche" Wagner roles, he always avoided Tannhäuser, Siegfried and Tristan, although they were offered him when Hannover heldentenor Otto Holldack retired. Battisti continued to sing for another ten years.

He finished his career in Rigoletto on May 30th, 1914. He died during a holiday in Bozen on August 22nd, 1933.

Franz Xaver Battisti sings Der fliegende Holländer: Auf hohem Felsen lag ich träumend, with Marga Burchardt
In RA format


Gramophone, Hannover 1909-06
6405r Contes d'Hoffmann (Offenbach): Die Liebe fürs Leben ist nur ein Wahn            4-42248
6406r Contes d'Hoffmann (Offenbach): Ha, wie in meiner Seele                          4-42249
6407r Carmen (Bizet): Blumenarie                                                      4-42259
6408r Aida (Verdi): Ich sehe dich wieder (w. Burchardt)                               3-44028
374s  Tiefland (d'Albert): Mit ihm, den ich liebe (w. Burchardt)                      044113
375s  Tiefland (d'Albert): Finale-Duett (w. Burchardt)                                044114
376s  Fliegender Holländer (Wagner): Bleib' Senta (w. Burchardt)                      044115
377s  Fliegender Holländer (Wagner): Auf hohem Felsen (Traumerzählung) (w. Burchardt) 044116
378s  Aida (Verdi): Duett (Fuggiam gli ardori) (w. Burchardt)                         044128
Reference: Einhard Luther, So viel der Helden. Biographie eines Stimmfaches, Teil 3: Wagnertenöre der Kaiserzeit (1871–1918), Berlin 2006
Discography source: (defunct)

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