Giulio Gatti-Casazza, world-renowned opera impresario who transformed American opera, retires from New York’s Metropolitan Opera House.

Giulio Gatti-Casazza (1869-1940) who was born in Udine, Italy was the beneficiary of extensive education at major universities as well Genoa's Naval School of Engineering. He left the world of engineering, however, to conduct the opera orchestra in Ferrara. From there he went to La Scala Opera House in Milan where he gained such fame that in 1908 New York's Metropolitan Opera House invited him to become manager and director. He served until 1936, a tenure longer than anyone at the Metropolitan.

Gatti-Casazza must be credited with bringing from Italy many Italian singers and conductors who ushered a golden age for the musical medium. Among these was the incomparable Enrico Caruso whose instant acclaim rendered him a legend. He also brought over the renowned conductor Arturo Toscanini. Gatti-Casazza premiered and thereby introduced New York to dozens of foreign operas as well as American operas and ballets. In a word his administration was most successful and considered a key factor in making the Metropolitan Opera House one of the world's premier opera houses.

Arturo Toscanini

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