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Zeffirelli, Franco(fräng`kō zāf-fērĕl`lē), 1923–2019, Italian opera, stage, and film director and designer, b. Florence as Gianfranco Corsi Zeffirelli. Zeffirelli had his first successes as assistant to the director Luchino ViscontiVisconti, Luchino
, 1906–76, Italian film director and writer, b. Milan as Luchino Visconti de Modrone. One of Italy's most acclaimed directors, Visconti has been called the father of neorealism for his early films Ossessione (1942) and La terra trema (1948).
..... Click the link for more information. in the films Troilus and Cressida and The Three Sisters. His first opera production was La Cenerentola for Milan's La Scala, after which he became known for opulent opera productions, which some called flamboyant. He mounted productions of Falstaff (1964, revival 2002), Antony and Cleopatra (1966), and Turandot (1987), among others, for the Metropolitan Opera Company, and he opened (1966) the Met's new theater at Lincoln Center with the world premier of Samuel BarberBarber, Samuel,
1910–81, American composer, b. West Chester, Pa. Barber studied at the Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia. His music is lyrical and generally tonal; his later works are more chromatic and polytonal with striking contrapuntal elements.
..... Click the link for more information. 's Antony and Cleopatra. Zeffirelli's films include The Taming of the Shrew (1966) starring Elizabeth TaylorTaylor, Elizabeth,
1932–2011, Anglo-American film actress, b. London. Regarded as one of the world's most beautiful women, Taylor went from child star and typical teenager roles to a series of ladylike roles and finally to playing worldly, sometimes shrewish women.
..... Click the link for more information. and Richard BurtonBurton, Richard,
1925–84, British actor, b. Pontrhydfen, Wales; his original name was Richard Jenkins. A dark, introspective actor with a splendid speaking voice, Burton specialized in portraying conflicted, frequently tormented, men.
..... Click the link for more information. , Romeo and Juliet (1968), Brother Sun, Sister Moon (1973), The Champ (1979), Endless Love (1981), La Traviata (1983), Hamlet (1990), Jane Eyre (1996), Tea with Mussolini (1999), and Callas Forever (2002), her last years. Zeffirelli served two terms as an Italian senator (1994–2001) as a member of BerlusconiBerlusconi, Silvio
, 1936–, Italian business executive and politician, premier (1994; 2001–6, 2008–11) of Italy, b. Milan. His first fortune was made in real estate during the 1960s.
..... Click the link for more information. 's party.
See his autobiography (1986); C. Napoleone, Franco Zeffirelli: Complete Works–Theatre, Opera, Film (2010).
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