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Italian tenor Gianni Raimondi has died at age 85

Raimondi, who sang with diva Maria Callas and other opera legends, has died aged 85, Milan's La Scala opera house said Friday. Raimondi died on Sunday, 19 OCT 2008, at his home in Pianoro near Bologna in central Italy. La Scala said in in a statement that he had requested that his death not be announced until after his private funeral. La Scala described Raimondi, who was born in 1923, as having "one of the biggest voices of his time." Raimondi gave 270 performances, including a standout display in Luchino Visconti's 1956 version of Giuseppe Verdi's "La Traviata". He appeared in Vienna, Berlin, London and New York and worked with Callas and orchestra great Herbert von Karajan at La Scala.

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