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Who was the greatest tenor of the 20th century?

Daryl 2007/09/06 20:12:53
Related Topics: The 20th Century
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We had many great tenors in the 20th century. Who was the greatest?
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Top Opinion

  • Hank 2007/09/07 02:31:18
    Caruso
    Hank
    +9
    A name not mentioned, Mario Lanza, I remember hearing him when I was a small child. Booming tenor voice that filled the auditorium, then a toss up between Pavarotti and Placido Domingo (when he was in his prime)

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Opinions

  • Mat Eames 3 days ago
    None of the above
    Mat Eames
    Jussi Borling easily the most pure voice of 20th century
  • robert liang 2013/08/16 13:37:36
    None of the above
    robert liang
    How about Mario Lanza?! How could you excluded him in the list?! In fact, he is the one and only greatest tenor of 20th century, and may be centuries to come!
  • prospermutsa.chitiyo 2013/06/06 12:13:52
    Pavarotti
    prospermutsa.chitiyo
    Let the truth be said. Luciano had discipline. This man is the greatest tenor ever. I also feel Carlo Bergonzi was another tenor who deserves to be in the list.
  • byungha.lee.92 2013/04/18 07:22:58
    None of the above
    byungha.lee.92
    Mario Lanza
    Nobody can not bit with Lanza in both Voice and technique even more As actor!
  • Atlanta Bill 2013/04/08 05:03:40
    None of the above
    Atlanta Bill
    I don't doubt that the five named (at least the top two) are among the greatest. There are, and have been, so many great tenors. And which is the greatest can depend on the criteria one uses. Mario Lanza, who has been mentioned in many comments, lacked control but was certainly amply supplied with a great vocal instrument and sense of drama, very similar to the great Beniamino Gigli. I agree with many here who consider Jussi Björling the greatest in all respects and of all time, but others who should have been mentioned are the Russian tenor Ivan Kozlovsky and the German Herbert Ernst Groh. The Spaniard Alfredo Kraus and Italian Franco Corelli should have been in the top five, along with Björling.
  • Pat Floyd 2013/02/27 17:28:43
    None of the above
    Pat Floyd
    +1
    The best tenor EVER is one you will not hear unless you check out "David Phelps" singing "Oh Holy Night" (or anything else for that matter). A graduate of Baylor, he has dedicated his life to Gospel Music....doesn't change the talent in the least!! Has a range unmatched.
  • Javier Diaz Pedrosa 2012/11/22 18:00:40
    None of the above
    Javier Diaz Pedrosa
    +1
    Antonio Paoli. The Tenor of Kings, and the King of Tenors. Go ahead and google the name.
  • Adrián López 2012/11/11 18:35:52
    None of the above
    Adrián López
    +2
    Alfredo Kraus
  • Albin Gierun 2012/10/21 08:48:05
    None of the above
    Albin Gierun
    Jussi Björling
  • aishu s 2012/09/10 17:58:43
    None of the above
    aishu s
    David Phelps
  • Gene Williams 2012/08/21 22:15:05
    Pavarotti
    Gene Williams
    Pavarotti!!!! We are extremely fortunate to have his recordings now that he is with God!
  • Mark 2012/07/29 06:58:26
    None of the above
    Mark
    +1
    Have you heard of Jan Kiepura?
    I invite you to listen/watch him on Youtube and iTunes. You will be most impressed by his beautiful voice and interpretations of operatic arias and many songs like "Ninon" and "Brunettes,blondes", among others.
    He was considered the greatest tenor of the 20th century and many times called "the King of Tenors" and a "new Caruso" back in the 1930s until his untimely death in 1966 from a heart attack.
  • Ysabeau 2012/06/13 00:11:58
    None of the above
    Ysabeau
    +2
    Franco Corelli is the best (spinto) dramatic tenor.
  • bshofner 2012/05/18 16:31:07
    Pavarotti
    bshofner
    +1
    Luciano's contribution to opera is unmatched. He single-handedly introduced opera to the masses - "the man on the street" - propelling it to its current mainstream status. No longer is the genre reserved strictly for Met Opera "patrons." For that ALONE, he deserves the gratitude of millions of disheartened listeners yearning for beauty, significance, substance, solace. Couple this with the fact that he was gifted with the most thrilling voice of the century - flawless technique and delivery ... yes, he is unequivocally the greatest tenor of all time He was born with not only the most beautiful voice in recorded history, but with the innate ability to connect with an audience unlike any tenor before or since. The love between Luciano and his audience bordered the supernatural. They loved him and he loved them back. He has left a void that no one can fill. A talent of this magnitude comes along every 100 years or so. How fortunate we are to have embraced the man, his music - the joy and phenomena that was the Great Pavarotti.
  • David W... bshofner 2012/11/19 17:58:35
    David Webber
    pav never single handed introduced opera to the masses. mario lanza did that in the 1950s. fact
  • Mike Pi... bshofner 2013/03/31 14:26:33
    Mike Pincher
    I assume you're kidding with Pav. Lanza's voice was more beautiful and more powerful, and he had the best tenor top in the history of music. Pav's voice was silver, Mario's golden and yet extremely powerful at the top. In terms of pure vocals, Lanza was superior to Pavarotti, whose voice was small in comparison.
  • johngilmore 2011/06/01 09:34:20
    None of the above
    johngilmore
    +1
    Joseph Schmidt sang in the 30s , os small stature he was too small for opera but had one of themost marvellous tenor voices and has been overlooked for too long
  • pwetzig 2011/04/25 22:01:34
    None of the above
    pwetzig
    +1
    Mario Lanza should be on this list! A glorious voice that was taken from us too soon. Mario you are one of the greatest. RIP
  • arpolis pwetzig 2011/05/02 21:05:20
    arpolis
    +3
    I agree,

    Mario Lanza had one of the Greatest Voices ever! Unfortunately, he died in his 30's and he signed with MGM which kept him out of OPERA. However, he influenced more people than any of the listed singers. In fact Domingo talks about how much Mario Lanza influenced his decisiopn to enter into Opera. I am in my 70's and learned about opera because of Mario Lanza. ARPolis
  • Caio Tu... pwetzig 2012/02/20 20:47:28
    Caio Turcato
    +1
    Shut Up !!!!!!! He is nothing close to Pavarotti!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • David W... Caio Tu... 2012/10/22 16:03:09
    David Webber
    +2
    you are so rude with your reply to Lanza. Pavarotti was influenced by Lanza and watched the great Caruso 50 times and admitted it. Pavs voice is very thin and there were better Tenors than Pav. Jussi Bjorling to name one. Lanza was a much better singer than pav or Jussi
  • Mike Pi... David W... 2012/11/11 17:59:28
    Mike Pincher
    +2
    Right on David W. Pav's voice is very well disciplined but it is small and thin in comparison to the great Lanza voice, which is much fuller and has more timbre. Pav is very fortunate to have people here who don't understand how thin his voice was say compared to Mario or Caruso.
  • Mike Pi... David W... 2013/03/31 14:34:48
    Mike Pincher
    I agree David that Mario was ultimately the best. I would call him much better than Pav but not much better than Jussi, although I give Mario the edge. His contemporaries were often very envious of his talent and that he didn't have to pay the price for his success. But Hollywood came after him, he didn't go after Hollywood. And Hollywood came after him for one reason and one reason only; he had a voice gifted from Heaven that even the greatest opera stars of the era didn't have and great looks to go along with it. Especially with his ringing voice at the top, Lanza separated himself from all the other tenors who have ever lived. And yes, I've heard them all, and nobody ultimately compares.
  • Mike Pi... Caio Tu... 2012/11/11 17:57:16
    Mike Pincher
    +3
    No, you shut up Caio Tu. Lanza is superior to Pavarotti, whose voice is small by comparison. Pav has a laser-like quality, but it's a small laser. Mario's voice was both larger and more beautiful and yet could also sing spinto. Toward the end of his life it is even arguable he was a dramatic tenor. Pav would have strained his you know whats trying to sing spinto.
  • Mike Pi... Caio Tu... 2013/03/31 14:31:14
    Mike Pincher
    I agree with you that Mario wasn't close to Pav; he was far superior to Pav. Pav's voice was reed thin compared to Lanza. People get swayed sometimes by Pav's personality to the extent that they don't catch the limitations of his voice. Marvelous vocal control, but his voice was simply too small to be considered the greatest. But Lanza fills the bill. He had an emotion and stirring voice of passion that Pav also couldn't match. Jealousy reigned during Lanza's era, but the top brass and opera colleagues all knew the undeniable, that Lanza was the greatest tenor of his time and ultimately, ever.
  • robert ... Caio Tu... 2013/08/16 13:47:22
    robert liang
    +2
    Are you deaf, or never heard the song of Mario Lanza?
  • Mike Pi... pwetzig 2012/11/11 17:54:17
    Mike Pincher
    +3
    No Mario, you were THE greatest!
  • Antonio 2011/03/04 10:37:57
    None of the above
    Antonio
    +1
    In my opinion it was Jussi Björling. His voice may not be a "strong" voice, but it is the most beautifull ever.
  • Sokra 2011/01/28 19:26:41
    Caruso
    Sokra
    +2
    Of the ones mentioned, Caruso is the only one I could even consider voting for. There are SO many tenors I consider to be better than the others noted here, such as Jussi Björling, Franco Corelli or Beniamino Gigli just to name a few
  • David W... Sokra 2012/11/19 18:11:12
    David Webber
    caruso was a great tenor for his time, but he struggled with some of the more powerful operas and declined to perform them on stage. his voice just was not poweful enough. every tenor has there limits. it is more or less hard to judge carusos voice because of the poor recordings, due to primative recording equipment for his time.
  • Kirsten 2011/01/25 12:08:33
    None of the above
    Kirsten
    +2
    I must say Jussi Bjoerling. He was the greatest, with his fantastic technique and his silvery tone.- Perfection. (strange to find Bocelli on the list!!)
  • chuks 2010/12/31 07:22:18
    Domingo
    chuks
    +1
    placido domingo
  • peters 2010/11/23 07:29:02
    Caruso
    peters
    +1
    Caruso is the only one here. Gigli is close to Caruso.Bjoeling aand Lanza are great also. Forget the other four. Good, but not anywhere near Caruso and Gigli.
  • Mike Pi... peters 2012/11/11 18:01:34
    Mike Pincher
    +3
    I consider Lanza far more rounded in his art than Caruso and Gigli Peters, which is something that even Caruso's son Enrico Caruso Jr. admitted. Mario was more versatile than either Caruso or Gigli, though I admire them both.
  • David W... Mike Pi... 2012/11/19 18:16:25
    David Webber
    well said sir. this is what makes lanza stand out from every other tenor in history, the ability to sing almost anything. his diction is second to none and his timbre instantly reconisable
  • GiovDeMartino 2010/11/08 17:16:06
    None of the above
    GiovDeMartino
    +1
    Without any shadow of doubt: BENIAMINO GIGLI
  • mikko 2010/09/28 08:49:52
    None of the above
    mikko
    +2
    Of course Jussi Björling.
  • iloveluciano 2010/08/22 11:22:46
    Pavarotti
    iloveluciano
    +4
    Hands down, Pavarotti. Never in my life have I seen an audience so enraptured by a singer. People jumping up and down like it was Beatlemania, sometimes crawling over their seats to get to him. His voice was unlike any other tenor I've ever heard. Witnessing his gift was as close to an out-of-body experience as I've ever had. It was like a sterling silver sword swooping through the crowd. Goosebumps from the sheer beauty of tone, perfection of diction, clarity, technique, vulnerability, passion and as Carreras said, "sunshine in his voice." Add his captivating charisma and presence ... no, there is no one like the Great Man and more than likely it will be many years before we see anyone come even close. Opera and classical music of today is appreciated by millions, like myself, who simply would have never taken the time to listen, had it not been for him. In short, Pavarotti was a phenomenon.

    Sidenote: Bocelli does NOT belong in this group. He's a classical / pop artist, and has never been or ever will be an opera star. Bocelli has a lovely voice, but nowhere near Pavarotti's league. Big Lucy was simply in a league of his own. "There were tenors, and then there was Pavarotti." Bocelli, and many classical / opera artists of today, owe a great debt to Luciano for awakening the masses to the joy of bel canto.
  • Mike Pi... ilovelu... 2012/11/11 18:03:21
    Mike Pincher
    +3
    Of those who have heard both Pavarotti and Lanza live, iloveluciano, Lanza has received the more favorable reviews. Hate to upset your applecart, but Pav's voice was small compared to Mario's.
  • David W... ilovelu... 2012/11/19 18:22:12
    David Webber
    sorry to say, pavs voice is not the best, not by any stretch of the imagination. jussi bjorlings voice was better to name one. I would say pavs voice is in the top 20

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