Bechi, Gino, notable Italian baritone; b. Florence, Oct. 16, 1913; d. there, Feb. 2, 1993. He studied in Florence with Frazzi and Di Giorgi and in Alessandria. In 1936 he made his operatic debut as Germont in Empoli, and then sang in Rome (1938–52) and at Milan’s La Scala (1939–44; 1946–53), where he acquired an admirable reputation. In 1950 he sang with the La Scala company during its visit to London’s Covent Garden, and he returned to London in 1958 to sing at Drury Lane. In 1952 he appeared in Chicago and San Francisco. He also made appearances in musical films. In later years, he was active as a teacher and opera producer. Bechi was best known for his Verdi roles, among them Falstaff, Amonasro, Hamlet, lago, and Nabucco.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire