Mario Lanza

Opera Singer + Actor
Born Jan 31, 1921

Mario Lanza, was an American tenor, singer, actor, and Hollywood movie star of the late 1940s and the 1950s. The son of Italian emigrants, he began studying to be a professional singer at the age of 16. He was born Alfredo Arnold Cocozza. He changed his name when he signed with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. His mother's maiden name was Maria Lanza. After appearing at the Hollywood Bowl in 1947, Lanza signed a seven-year contract with MGM's head, Louis B.… Read More

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Born in 1948.
Following the success of these performances, he was invited to return to New Orleans in 1949 as Alfredo in Verdi's La traviata.
1950 - 1951 2 More Events
1952 4 Years Old In 1952, Lanza was dismissed by MGM after he had recorded the songs for The Student Prince. … Read More
1955 7 Years Old Lanza returned to an active film career in 1955 in Serenade, released by Warner Bros. … Read More
1957 9 Years Old He then moved to Rome, Italy in May 1957, where he worked on the film Seven Hills of Rome, and returned to live performing in November of that year, singing for Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Variety Show at the London Palladium.
1958 10 Years Old 1 More Event
From January to April 1958, Lanza gave a concert tour of the UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, France and Germany. … Read More


1959 11 Years Old 1 More Event
In April 1959, Lanza reportedly felt sick with natural causes he always told his his family to be strong and just believe. … Read More
1967 19 Years Old Philadelphia's Queen Street Park was renamed for Lanza in 1967. … Read More


1983 35 Years Old In 1983, a 90-minute PBS documentary, Mario Lanza: The American Caruso, hosted by Plácido Domingo and featuring Lanza's family and professional associates; was nominated for a Primetime Emmy as "Outstanding Informational Special." … Read More
1987 39 Years Old Shortly before his own death in 1987, Enrico Jr. wrote in Enrico Caruso: My Father and My Family (posthumously published by Amadeus in 1990) that: "I can think of no other tenor, before or since Mario Lanza, who could have risen with comparable success to the challenge of playing Caruso in a screen biography... … Read More


1994 46 Years Old In 1994, outstanding tenor José Carreras paid tribute to Lanza during a worldwide concert tour, saying of him, "If I'm an opera singer, it's thanks to Mario Lanza."


2007 59 Years Old In October 2007, Charles Messina directed the big budget musical Be My Love: The Mario Lanza Story, written by Richard Vetere, about Lanza's life, which was produced by Sonny Grosso and Phil Ramone, and which premiered at The Tilles Center for the Performing Arts in Greenvale, New York. … Read More


2008 60 Years Old …  In an interview shortly before her own death in 2008, González recalled that Lanza was "very correct, likeable, with a powerful and beautiful voice". … Read More
2009 61 Years Old His equally outstanding colleague Plácido Domingo echoed these comments in a 2009 CBS interview with, "Lanza's passion and the way his voice sounds are what made me sing opera. … Read More
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