|who said it||quote|
|A lovely comment posted by Candy on YouTube||"Enrico Caruso could take a menu from an Italian restaurant, sing a description of a rigatoni dish, and make it sound like a timeless love song!
To hear the words and emotions resonate in his unique voice with its rich, golden sound and vibrant texture is captivating beyond words.
His phrasing is unlike any other singer and the sincerity and courageous vulnerability of his singing makes for an ecstatic listening experience."
|Arturo Toscanini in 1898||"By Heaven! If this Neapolitan continues to sing like this, he will make the whole world talk about him."|
|Beniamino Gigli||"I wonder what would have become of me if, like him, I had been born in a city slum; for I did not have the gifts of personality that enabled Caruso to create life and warmth around him wherever he went."|
|Bruno Walter, conductor||"I loved his voice, his talent, the sense of beauty expressed in his nuances of timbre, his portamento and rubato, his great musicality and naturalness, and we got along so well."|
|Caruso about his first teacher||"It was he [Guglielmo Vergine] who impressed, time and again, the necessity of singing as nature intended, and - I remember - he constantly warned, don't let the public know that you work. So I went slowly. I never forced the voice."|
|Caruso about his performance||"I know that I shall sing only a certain number of times. So I think to myself, "Tonight I will hold back my voice. I will save it a little and that will mean I may be able to sing a few more times." But when I go before the audience, when I hear the music and begin to sing, I cannot hold back. I give the best there is in me - I give all."|
|Caruso about his singing||"I suffer so much in this life. That is what they [the audience] are feeling when I sing, that is why they cry. People who felt nothing in this life cannot sing."|
|Caruso about his success||"A big chest, a big mouth, 90 percent memory, 10 percent intelligence, lots of hard work, and something in the heart."|
|Caruso about Jewish cantors||“Jewish cantors employ a peculiar art and method of singing in their delivery. They are unexcelled in the art of covering the voice, picking up a new key, in the treatment of the ritual chant, and overcoming vocal difficulties that lie in the words rather than in the music.”|
|Caruso about Nellie Melba and Melba about Caruso||Not a quote but an action. The Australian soprano Nellie Melba was notorius for her ruthlessness and coldness. Performing with her in La Bohème Caruso, as a joke, pressed a hot sausage into her hand that he'd hidden in his pocket as he sang "Che gelida manina, se la lasci riscaldar."("What a cold little hand, let me warm it"). She had considered Caruso coarse and uncultivated and this, of course, only confirmed that ...
Melba, however, was impressed with Caruso's voice and wrote in her autobiography (Melodies and Memories): "As a voice - pure and simple - his was the most wonderful tenor I ever heard."
|Caruso about watermelons...||"Watermelon - it's a good fruit. You eat, you drink, you wash your face."|
|Caruso on Babe Ruth||A group of reporters once asked him what he thought of *Babe Ruth.
Caruso, who was unfailingly polite and amiable, replied that he didn't know because unfortunately he had never heard her sing !
*Legendary American baseball player
|Caruso on SF earthquake 1906||Caruso was caught in the great 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire. He swore he would never again go back to such a city,
"where disorders like that are permitted."
|Caruso struck with stage fright||“The Little Me would like to strangle the important Me within!
Move out Little Me, the Big Me would like to sing through me! Escape, escape, the important Me could sing!”
Back stage talking to himself before performing. Probably not in English....
|Dr. P. Mario Marafioti in the book "Caruso's Method of Voice Production"||"Caruso was a born singer, and a perfect one, by almost divine and superhuman will. He obeyed the call of his heart rather than technical influences, his sentiment being his only guide in singing. Everything in him was instinctive and intuitive."
|Geraldine Farrar||“There are two singers you must put aside, one is Enrico Caruso, the other is Rosa Ponselle. Then you may begin to discuss all the others!”|
|Giacomo Puccini when Caruso auditioned for La Bohéme||"Who sent you to me? God Himself?"|
|Giovanni Martinelli about Caruso||At a party an overdressed flamboyant woman persisted in demanding answers from Giovanni Martinelli
to questions in a loud voice to attract attention. Finally she said, “Come now, Mr. Martinelli, tell us the truth – Caruso was never as good as his press made him to be, is that not the truth.” Martinelli swung around and faced his tormentor. “Madame”, he declared in his accented, but thoroughly accurate English, “Put Gigli, Lauri-Volpi and me together – make us one tenor – and we would not be fit to kiss Caruso’s shoe tops”. “Does that answer you?”
|Guglielmo Vergine about Caruso's voice in 1892||"You can't sing. You haven't any voice at all. It sounds like the wind in the shutters." "It's like gold at the bottom of the Tiber ... not worth digging for."|
|Guilio Gatti-Casazza (director of the Metropolitan Opera)||"I heard all the great tenors of my time over and over again. Many of them were wonderful artists and had extraordinary voices. But in my opinion, not a single one of them ever sang an entire role with such vocal and artistic consistency as Caruso."|
|Henry Pleasants (renowned American music critic)||2 centuries ago, Tosi wrote; "Oh, how great a master is the heart! Confess it my beloved singers, and gratefully own that you would not have arrived at the highest rank if you had not been its scholars. Own that in a few lessons from it, you learned the most beautiful expressions. Own, that heart corrects the defects of nature, - softens a harsh voice, betters an indifferent one, and perfects a good one! When the heart sings you cannot dissemble. Nor has truth a greater power of persuading.."
With Caruso's voice, his heart was little burdened with correcting the defects of nature, softening harshness or bettering indifference. It could concentrate on the perfection of the good. Since his heart was big, and the voice nearly perfect to begin with, the lyrical communication was an unexampled combination of excitement and warmth'. The public was his partner in the fulfillment of a mission, and his role was to give the best, and all of the best that was in him...'
|Italian teenager commenting on YouTube||"I've tried to listen to other tenors and THEY are really feeling the songs ..... Caruso is different, he's something special because he makes YOU feel the song."|
|Jan de Turovski||"I am by now 72 years old. My grandfather told me about Caruso. That he heard him live in the Metropolitan Opera as Radames. That he could not sleep after that for some nights. That he decided to see and hear him again in that role because he thought to have dreamt. So he went to hear him once more.
And that overwhelming experience lasted all his life."
|John McCormack about Caruso's voice||"36 years later that voice still rings in my ears, the memory of it will never die."|
|Richard Strauss in excitement after hearing Caruso the first time||"He is singing the soul (spirit) of the melody!"|
|Richard Tauber||"I treasure Caruso's records as the greatest and finest lesson any singer could possibly have. None of us living tenors could possibly stand any comparison with that voice. It makes me realise how little I have achieved."
[From Richard Tauber, by Diana Napier Tauber, London 1949, page 61-2]
On 28 May 1938, the eve of sailing from Naples for his Australian tour, Tauber visited Caruso's Mausoleum to pay his respects to the great tenor.
|Rosa Ponselle||"When you speak of tenors, you have to divide them into two groups. Caruso in the first group. All the others are in the second."|
|Tullio Serafin||“I have encountered three miracles - Enrico Caruso, Tita Ruffo and Rosa Ponselle.”|