Giuseppe Costa

12 February 1895 Messina – 9 January 1982 Milano

He studied voice in his native Messina, where he also made his debut as Turiddu – in either 1920 or 1923, depending on sources. This was followed by Arturo in I puritani at the same theater. In 1923 and 1928, he was very successful in Bologna as Duca and Arturo, respectively. 1924 saw him at the Teatro Regio in Parma (in Judith by Furlotti). From 1927 to 1932, he was a noted tenor on the Italian radio and took part in many complete opera productions, gaining considerable popularity. In 1930, he toured Belgium (Antwerp), Germany, Austria and Hungary with Italian troupes. From 1932 to 1934, he was in the USA, singing for the Teatro dei Piccoli, an itinerant troupe that staged opera with puppets; in 1934, he appeared in the Hollywood film Susanna opposite Lilian Harvey. Then he went back to Italy and continued his stage career – according to Kutsch and Riemens, until 1940, which cannot be true since he made his Carnegie Hall debut in a solo concert on February 11th, 1948.

He spent his last years at the Casa di riposo Verdi in Milano, where he took part in a house concert broadcast on Italian TV as late as 1979.

Reference 1: Kutsch & Riemens, reference 2: the website of Roberto Marcocci, reference 3: New York Times, 12 February 1948

Giuseppe Costa sings Rigoletto: Questa o quella

Giuseppe Costa sings Tosca: E lucevan le stelle

Many thanks to Anton Bieber for the recordings and label scans.

Go Home