One of the great voices of the Metropolitan Opera, the tenor Giovanni Martinelli has one of the longest tenures there of any principal artist (1913 - 1945) and a popularity with audiences that, at one point, was exceeded only by that of Enrico Caruso. A specialist in the French and Italian repertoires, who created the tenor leads in several Met premiers (Granados' "Goyescas," Tchaikovsky's "Eugene Onegin," Verdi's "Don Carlo," among many others), his greatest success came in 1937 in the title role of Verdi's "Otello," opposite Lawrence Tibbett and Helen Jepson. Read more... lead an active, vigorous life almost to the end of his days. A frequent attendee at Met performances, his entrances received as much applause as the evening's featured singers, sometimes more so. He was an attendee at the closing night of the Old Met and the opening night of the New Met in, both in 1966. In 1967, at the age of eighty-one, he sang his last performance, as the Emperor in a Seattle Opera performance of Puccini's "Turandot," proving that his voice had not failed him. He died, a happy man with a love of music and life that never faded, two years later, at the age of eighty three.