Rolandi, Gianna , gifted American soprano; b. N.Y., Aug. 16, 1952. Her first contact with opera came through her mother, herself a singer, and by the age of 15 she had already become acquainted with much of the operatic repertoire. She then enrolled at the Curtis Inst. of Music in Philadelphia (B.M., 1975). While still a student there, she was contracted to sing at the N.Y.C. Opera, with which she made an impressive debut as Olympia in Les Contes d’Hoffmann (Sept. 11, 1975). On Dec. 26, 1979, she made her Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y. as Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier. In 1981 she made her European debut at the Glyndebourne Festival singing Zerbinetta. In 1982 she sang the title role in a televised production of Lucia di Lammermoor with the N.Y.C. Opera, receiving flattering notices from the press. She scored an outstanding success as Bianca in Rossini’s Bianca e Falliero at its U.S. premiere at the Greater Miami Opera in 1987. In 1989 she appeared as Cimarosa’s Curiazio at the Rome Opera. In 1993 she sang Despina in Chicago. In 1996 she toured the U.S. as a soloist with the BBC Sym. Orch. of London. She was married to Andrew Davis.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire