Amelita Galli-Curci was an Italian operatic coloratura soprano. She was one of the best regarded singers of the early 20th century.
She was born as Amelita Galli into an upper-middle-class family in Milan, where she studied piano at the Milan Conservatory, winning a gold medal and at the age of sixteen was offered a position as professor. She was inspired to sing by her grandmother. Operatic composer Pietro Mascagni also encouraged Galli-Curci’s singing career. By her own choice, Galli-Curci’s singing was largely self-trained, from listening to other sopranos, reading old singing method books, and practicing piano exercises with her voice.
Galli-Curci made her operatic debut in 1906 at Trani, as Gilda in Rigoletto and she rapidly became acclaimed throughout Italy.
In 1908 she married the Marchese Luigi Curci, and added his last name to hers. They divorced in 1920 and the following year, Galli-Curci married Homer Samuels, her accompanist. In 1922 the Marchese Curci petitioned the papal council in Rome for an annulment.