Azio Corghi


(09 März 1937 — )

Azio Corghi was born at Cirié, near Turin. Until 1950 he divided his studies between those of painting and music. In 1956 he enrolled at the Conservatory of Turin, where he attended the classes of piano and music history held by M. Zanfi and Massimo Mila respectively. In 1962 he moved to Milan and attended the Conservatory of Milan, studying composition, choral music, conducting (choral and orchestral) and vocal polyphonic composition with Bruno Bettinelli, A. Bortone, A. Votto and G.Farina respectively. In 1967 he won the Ricordi-Rai competition with his Intavolature, which was performed at La Fenice in Venice. He taught at the Conservatory of Turin, then at the Conservatory of Milan. In 1973 the Fondazione Rossini of Pesaro and Casa Ricordi entrusted him with the preparation of the critical edition of Rossini’s L’italiana in Algeri. For the 1989-1990 season Blimunda, an opera with a libretto by the composer and José Saramago was staged at La Scala. A jury chaired by Goffredo Petrassi awarded him the “Omaggio a Massimo Mila” prize for his teaching activities. For the Rossini bicentenary he composed Suite dodo, after Rossini’s Péchés de vieillesse, while his ballet “un petit train de plaisir” was performed in Pesaro and broadcast live throughout the world. On 31 October 1993 Divara (“Wasser und Blut”), a music drama with a libretto by the composer and Saramago, was staged in Münster. He was appointed academician of Santa Cecilia, coordinator of the courses and professor of composition at the Accademia Petrassi. On the invitation of the 2nd “Umberto Micheli” International Piano Competition he composed the concerto study “...ça ira!”. For the Donizetti centenary celebrations he was commissioned to transcribe some ariettas from Nuits d’été à Pausilippe. Ona commission from La Scala, he composed Tat’jana, an opera based on Chekhov. In 2000, on a commission of the Rai Orchestra, he composed Amori incrociati, after the Decameron in a version by Aldo Busi. In 2001, for the Städtische Bühnen Münster he wrote Cruci-Verba, a reading and comment from Saramago’s Gospel according to  Jesus Christ on Liszt’s Via Crucis. For the Bellini centenary he composed “...malinconia, ninfa gentile” for the Teatro Massimo Bellini in Catania. The Accademia di Santa Cecilia chaired by Luciano Berio commissioned him to write De paz e de guerra, on a text by Saramago. On 8 July 2004, on a commission from the Accademia Chigiana, his ¿Pia?, a music-drama dialogue freely based on Marguerite Yourcenar’s Dialogue in the Swamp was produced at the Teatro dei Rozzi in Siena. In 2005 he wrote Il dissoluto assolto, a one-act piece of music theatre with a libretto by himself and Saramago, a co-production of the Teatro San Carlos of Lisbon and La Scala in Milan. On 29th January 2007 Filarmonica della Scala, conducted by Riccardo Chailly, world premiered Poema Sinfonico, a piece commissioned for the 25th anniversary of the orchestra. The Ensemble Punto It, to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the birth of Andrea Palladio, commissioned him Giocasta. The opera  is a reinterpretation (from a modern perspective in the libretto by Maddalena Mazzocut-Mis) of Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex, the tragedy that was performed in 1585 (with music by Andrea Gabrieli) to inaugurate the Teatro Olimpico and in this venue the opera took place on 19th June 2009.

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