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Antonis Kalaitzakis

Soloist, Tenor
He was born in Egypt in 1921 and moved to Crete in 1936, where he began studying voice at the Hellenic Conservatory of Music and Arts under Nikolaos Karystinos. He later won a Manolis Kalomiris scholarship and continued his studies at the National Conservatory of Athens under Maggie Karatza, graduating in 1948. At the same time, he enrolled at the University of Athens School of Medicine, studying anthropological ethnology. He was hired by the GNO in 1940; in the period from 1941 to 1953, he sang starring and mainly minor tenor roles in nine productions and/or revivals of operas: The Gypsy Baron [Der Zigeunerbaron], Giuditta, Paganini, Rhea, The merry widow [Die lustige Witwe] (as Camille, Count de Rosillon), Rigoletto (as Duke of Mantua), the House of the Three Girls [Das Dreimädelhaus] and Lucia di Lammermoor (as Edgardo and later as Arturo). In 1947 he founded the short-lived Greek Melodrama together with the Hagios Athinaios, Kotsaridou and others. During the period from 1954 to 1956 he toured in Africa to give concerts in major cities, under the auspices of the British Music Society and the GNO Union of Letters and Arts. During his stay there, he took two two-year trips as an empirical anthropologist to the interior of the continent (1954-56, 1958-60). His recorded impressions were published in 1997. During the period from 1956 to 1958 he continued studying voice in Italy under tenor Nino Piccaluga. He then returned to Greece and taught for five years at the Athens Conservatoire and for 12 years at the National Conservatoire. In addition, he served as jury member in various international competitions in Italy for selecting opera singers.