Anita Cerquetti

Italian soprano Anita Cerquetti was born at Montecosaro on 13 April 1931. Initially a violinist, she studied voice for just a year in Perugia before making her operatic debut as Aida at Spoleto in 1951. Her career lasted barely ten years before she retired mysteriously (possibly due to ill health) in 1961, aged thirty, but lived on until 11 October 2014, aged eighty-three.

She sang mostly in Italy, but also appeared in Barcelona, Chicago, Mexico City, the Netherlands, New York and Philadelphia.

There are two commercial 1957 Decca recordings, an Italian opera aria recital and a complete recording of La Gioconda, and also a number of pirate recordings, including 1958 performances of Aida and Norma.