- What’s On
Leyla Gencer is a world-renowned Turkish opera singer, who was born in Istanbul. She studied under the famous soprano Arangi-Lombardi, continued her education at the Istanbul Conservatory, and became a soloist at the Ankara Opera, with the role of Santuzza in 1950.
In 1951, she gave her first recital abroad at the BBC, and in 1953, she met Italian audiences in Naples Flegrea. Until 1983, Leyla Gencer performed opera leading roles across Europe, particularly in every corner of Italy, and in North and South America. She was particularly famous for bel canto, the art of singing beautifully, and her repertoire includes operas by Rossini, Donizetti, Bellini, Verdi, and Puccini. She worked with famous conductors and directors of the era.
Today, the winners of the Leyla Gencer Singing Competition, which was initiated in her name, perform on famous stages all around the world. After retiring from the stage, Leyla Gencer gained a special reputation for the masterclasses she gave. She passed away on May 10, 2008, in Milan.