- Mario Lanza Day Proclaimed
In State Of Pennsylvania
- From Bill Ronayne
- Sunday, November 7th, 2004 was proclaimed 'Mario Lanza
Day' in the entire Commonwealth of Pennsylvania by Governor Edward G. Rendell.
- This was the first time that the state in which Mario
Lanza was born has given him a day in his honor. Over the years there
have been many 'Mario Lanza Days' in Philadelphia, the city where Lanza
was born as Alfredo Cocozza in 1921, and other cities have honored his
memory including most recently New Rochelle, New York. The Commonwealth
of Massachusetts has also proclaimed Mario Lanza Day twice in last five
- The proclamation was read by Mario Lanza Institute President
Mary Galanti Papola at the 43rd Annual Mario Lanza Ball, which took place
at the DoubleTree Hotel in Philadelphia on the evening of November 7th.
Fans came from all over the United States as well as from foreign countries
including Canada, Mexico, England, Ireland, China, and Japan to remember
the legendary tenor.
- Celebrity guests in attendance included opera stars Elaine
Malbin, Enrico Di Giuseppe, and Frank Guarrera, WGBH radio personality
and the 'Voice of the Boston Symphony' Ron Della Chiesa, and Lanza's son
Damon. In the proclamation Governor Rendell congratulated the Lanza Institute
for its many years of promoting Mario Lanza's legacy and perpetuating his
dream of aiding young opera singers through scholarships. He also cited
Lanza's contribution to music and his extraordinary talent.
- The Mario Lanza Institute, which is a nonprofit organization,
maintains The Mario Lanza Museum located in South Philadelphia at 712 Montrose
Street a few blocks from where Lanza was born and conducts a yearly competition
with the finals taking place at the annual Ball. Since its inception in
1961, the institute has granted over 200 scholarships with many recipients
going on to major international careers. Mario Lanza was a uniquely gifted
artist whose talent encompassed many different styles and genres of music.
He has been an inspiration to many performers and was an ambassador for
all good music.
- For more information about Mario Lanza and the scholarship
program please contact the Mario Lanza Institute at 215-238-9691 or write
to Mario Lanza Institute P.O. Box 54624 Philadelphia, PA 19148-0624.