Leading tenor in road tragedy9:45, 12th February 2013
Italian tenor Salvatore Licitra has died at the age of 43 after suffering severe injuries in a scooter accident in Sicily on 27 August.
Doctors believe that Licitra lost control of his vehicle following a cerebral haemorrhage, sustaining further head and chest injuries as he crashed into a wall. He was immediately taken to the Garibaldi Hospital in Catania, but never regained consciousness.
His family has agreed that his organs are to be donated. A statement said ‘he had a gifted voice and he will donate his organs to give the gift of life to people’.
Licitra first gained worldwide fame as a last-minute replacement for Pavarotti in Tosca at New York’s Metropolitan Opera in 2002, and in Italy he was dubbed ‘the new Pavarotti’. Born in Switzerland in 1968, he studied at the Arrigo Boito Conservatory in Parma before making his La Scala debut in 1999.
‘Licitra represented the school and tradition of Italian song in his natural relationships to words,’ said a spokesperson for La Scala in Milan on learning of the tenor’s death. ‘A decade of his personal history was interwoven with our theatre.’