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Italian Opera Singer, Director Dies

April 11, 2001

GENEVA (AP) _ Graziella Sciutti, an Italian soprano and opera director best known for her interpretations of Mozart, has died, her family said Wednesday. She was 68.

Sciutti died in Geneva on Monday, according to a death notice in the daily Tribune de Geneve. She had been suffering from cancer.

Born in Turin, northern Italy, in 1932, Sciutti made her first operatic appearance at the Aix-en-Provence Festival in France in 1951.

She went on to perform under Herbert von Karajan at Milan’s La Scala. She was lead soprano at a smaller theatre at La Scala called La Piccola Scala for eight years from its inception in 1955.

She became a member of the Vienna State Opera in 1960 and the following year made her debut in San Francisco in one of her most celebrated roles, as Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro.

She began her directing career at Covent Garden in London and at the Glyndebourne Festival in England, where she directed and performed in Poulenc’s La Voix Humaine in 1977.

She then went on to direct in Canada and for the opera companies in San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Dallas and Miami, as well as in Britain, Germany and Italy.

She joined London’s Royal College of Music in the mid 1980s and continued to teach there until shortly before her death.

Sciutti leaves a daughter, Susanna, and a grandson, Michael. The funeral will take place at the Italian Catholic Mission in Geneva on Apr. 17.

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