Lando Bartolini was born in Prato/Florence and received his musical education at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia after winning the Mario Lanza Award in 1968. His voice teacher was the famous bass Nicola Moscona. In 1973 he made his debut as Osaka in Mascagni´s “Iris” at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona and as Pinkerton in “Madama Butterfly” at the New York City Opera where he sang nearly all major spinto parts during the following years.
Having become a naturalized American, Lando Bartolini returned to Italy in January 1983 to make his debut at La Scala di Milano in the title role of “Ernani”. He was invited to all major opera houses in Europe (Vienna, Paris, Munich, Hamburg, Berlin, Covent Garden and the Arena di Verona) and the United States as well as South America.
In 1986, he replaced Luciano Pavarotti in a new production of “Ernani” at the Lyric Opera of Chicago and had a huge success with the audience and the critics which finally secured him a place among the leading tenors of these days. In 1988 Lando Bartolini made his debut with the Metropolitan Opera New York where he has been a regular guest since then (singing Radames in “Aida”, Manrico in “Il Trovatore” and the title role in “Andrea Chenier”).
In 1991, Lando Bartolini returned to “his city”, Florence, to sing Turiddu in “Cavalleria rusticana”. One of his most prestigious project was Calaf in the new production of “Turandot” at the Maggio Musicale in 1997, the production later toured to China to be shown “at the original place”.
Lando Bartolini has worked with nearly all important conductors and all leading opera singers of the 80s and 90s. His repertoire includes (with the exception of Riccardo in “Un Ballo in Maschera” all major tenor parts since he has encountered the final tenor challenge and made his debut as Otello. He has become a specialist for the dramatic Italian tenor roles, such as Manrico in “Il Trovatore”, Radames in “Aida”, Alvaro in “La Forza del Destino”, Dick Johnson in “La Fanciulla del West” und Pollione in “Norma”. He also sings Canio and Turiddu in “Cavalleria rusticana/I Pagliacci” in the same evening but his most important role seems to be Calaf in “Turandot”, a part he has sung more than 200 times in more than 30 different productions all over the world.
Although Lando Bartolini never regarded himself as a studio singer he made some recordings which include Zandonai´s “I Cavalieri di Ekebu” (Fonit Cetra) and Respighi´s “Semirama” (Hungaroton) as well as Puccini's "Turandot" (Naxos). Also available from Hungaroton is a studio recital of opera arias. More interesting is the CD “Lando Live” with live clips from performances between 1980 and 1992 (Legato Classics).
During the last years, Lando Bartolini did some touring with the famous Turandot production from Florence. In March 2002 he sang Otello at Hamburg Opera. He also is a regular guest at Torre del Lago each summer where he recently sang Calaf and Des Grieux. In November 2003, he enjoyed his 30th stage anniversary with a role debut: In Lincoln Center, New York, he sang the title role in Mascagni's opera "Guglielmo Ratcliff".
Copyright: B. Kok, 2003