Gavazzeni, Gianandrea, Italian conductor, writer on music, and composer; b. Bergamo, July 27, 1909; d. there, Feb. 5, 1996. He studied at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome (1921–25), and then took courses in piano with Renzo Lorenzoni and in composition with Ildebrando Pizzetti and Mario Pilati at the Milan Cons. (1925–31). While he devoted much time to musical journalism, he also pursued a conducting career from 1940. In 1948 he became a regular conductor at Milan’s La Scala, where he served as artistic director from 1966 to 1968. He took La Scala companies on visits to the Edinburgh Festival (1957), to Moscow (1964), and to Montreal (1967). In 1957 he conducted La Bohème at the Lyric Opera of Chicago and in 1965 Anna Bolena at the Glyndebourne Festival. On Oct. 11, 1976, he made his Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y. conducting Il Trovatore. He then pursued his career in Europe, where he was especially admired for his interpretations of the Italian operatic repertory. Among his numerous writings were Donizetti (Milan, 1937); Musorgskij e la musica russa dell’800 (Florence, 1943); Le feste musicali (Milan, 1944); Il suono è stanco (Bergamo, 1950); Quaderno del musicista (Bergamo, 1952); Musicisti d’Europa (Milan, 1954); La musica e il teatro (Pisa, 1954); La morte dell’opera (Milan, 1954); La casa di Arlecchino (Milan, 1957); Trent’anni di musica (Milan, 1958); Diario di Edimburgo e d’America (Milan, 1960); La campane di Bergamo (Milan, 1963); I nemici della musica (Milan, 1965); Carta da musica (Milan, 1968); Non eseguire Beethoven e altri scritti (Milan, 1974). He composed the opera Paolo e Virginia (1932; Bergamo, 1935) and the ballet II furioso all’isola di S. Domingo (1940).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire