Menotti R.I.P.

Composer Gian Carlo Menotti dies at 95
Associated Press

ROME – Gian Carlo Menotti, who composed a pair of Pulitzer Prize-winning operas and founded the Spoleto arts festivals in the United States and Italy, died Thursday at a hospital in Monaco, his son said. He was 95.

"He died pretty peacefully and without any pain. He died in my arms," said Francis Menotti by telephone from Monte Carlo.

The Italian composer won Pulitzers for a pair of the 20th century’s more successful operas: "The Consul," which premiered in 1950 in Philadelphia, and "The Saint of Bleecker Street," which opened at New York’s Broadway Theater in 1954. "The Consul" also earned him the New York Drama Critics Circle award as the best musical play of the year in 1954.

He also wrote the Christmas classic "Amahl and the Night Visitors" for NBC, which was broadcast in 1951 and may have been the first opera written for television. Menotti also authored the libretto for "Vanessa," which was composed by Samuel Barber, and revised the libretto for Barber’s "Antony and Cleopatra." In addition to working together, Barner and Menotti shared a house in Westchester, a New York suburb, for many years.

By 1976, The New York Times called Menotti the most-performed opera composer in the United States.

AP Wire | 02/01/2007 | Composer Gian Carlo Menotti dies at 95.

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