Constantin "Tino" Rossi (29 April 1907 – 26 September 1983) was a French singer and film actor.
|Birth name||Constantin Rossi|
|Born||29 April 1907|
Ajaccio, Corsica, France
|Died||26 September 1983 76) (aged|
Neuilly-sur-Seine, Île-de-France, France
|Genres||Cabaret, French pop|
Rossi, born in Ajaccio, Corsica, was gifted with a voice well suited for opera. He became a tenor in the French cabaret style. Later, he appeared in various movies. During his career he recorded hundreds of songs and he appeared in more than 25 films, the most notable of which was the 1954 production, Si Versailles m'était conté... directed by Sacha Guitry. His romantic ballads had especially women swooning and his art songs by Jules Massenet (1842–1912), Reynaldo Hahn (1875–1947), and other composers, sold out theaters wherever he performed.
As a young man, Rossi played guitar and sang in many places of his hometown of Ajaccio, but later he went to perform in Marseille and at resort clubs along the French Riviera. In the early 1930s he went to Paris and within a few years achieved enormous success, joining a Columbia Records roster that included the biggest stars of that time such as Lucienne Boyer, Damia, Pills et Tabet, Mireille, and Jean Sablon.
Rossi's success was greatly aided by songwriter Vincent Scotto (1876–1952), who wrote his first hits and collaborated with him for many years, composing and arranging many of Rossi's songs. Prior to World War II, Rossi was a major box office attraction in the French-speaking world, and expanded his audience 1938 to the U.S. and Canada during a first visit there. Rossi began his film career with a role in Les Nuits Moscovites (1934); his first real success came with Marinella (1936).
During the Occupation of France by Nazi Germany Rossi's film career reached its peak, notably with Fièvres (1942), Le Soleil a toujours raison (1943), Mon amour est près de toi (1943) and L'Île d'amour (1944). Like many celebrities, Tino Rossi was arrested on October 7, 1944 by several police officers in search of information on his close Corsican friend, Etienne Leandri, suspected of active collaborationism. Following three months' detention in the prison of Fresnes, near Paris, during which he stubbornly refused the assistance of a lawyer, he was freed from further detention by a judge, who deemed the charge leveled against him void of substance. Tino Rossi who, in October 1943, had loaned his personal car to a resistance network to transport weapons and enable several escapes (including that of a general), accepted—an extremely rare action at the time—exceptional official apologies.
He is the recipient of the prestigious musical award Grand Prix du Disque.
In 1948 Tino Rossi married Lilia Vetti, a young dancer he had met in 1941 thanks to revue leader Mistinguett. They had one son called Laurent (1948–2015) and remained married to each other until his death. In 1982 President François Mitterrand named Rossi a Commander of the Legion of Honour for his contributions to French culture. That same year Rossi gave his last public performance at the Casino de Paris, a show that popular demand turned into a three-month stint.
Rossi died of pancreatic cancer in 1983 in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France. His body was transported to Ajaccio for burial in the family grave. His wife died in 2003 aged 79. Ajaccio named a street and the sailing harbor in his honor and in Nogent-sur-Marne, there is a square named Tino Rossi Square. Tino Rossi's unique status on Corsica is reflected in several (somewhat hidden) references to him in the comic book "Asterix in Corsica" (1973) by Uderzo and Goscinny.
|1934||Les Nuits moscovites||Le chanteur napolitain|
|1935||L'affaire Coquelet||Jean Clairval|
|1935||Justin de Marseille||Le chanteur|
|1935||Adémaï au moyen âge||Le troubadour|
|1936||Au son des guitares||Jeannot|
|1937||Naples au baiser de feu||Mario Esposito|
|1938||Lumières de Paris||Carlo Ferrari|
|1942||Fièvres||Le ténor Jean Dupray|
|1943||Le soleil a toujours raison||Tonio|
|1943||Le chant de l'exilé||Ramon Etcheverry|
|1943||Mon amour est près de toi||Jacques Marton|
|1944||The Island of Love||Orsani dit Bicchi|
|1946||Song of the Clouds||Sylvio|
|1946||Destins||André Cartier / Fred Cartier|
|1947||The Unknown Singer||Julien Mortal / Paolo|
|1949||Deux amours||Sylvain Vincent / Désiré Vincent|
|1949||The Pretty Miller Girl||Franz Schubert|
|1950||Sending of Flowers||Paul Delmet|
|1951||Paris Still Sings||Tino Rossi|
|1951||Au pays du soleil||Titin Olivieri|
|1952||Son dernier Noël||Marc Damiani|
|1954||Si Versailles m'était conté...||Le gondolier|
|1954||Tourments||Jacques Duffot dit Tony Caylor|
|1963||Jusqu'au bout du monde|
|1970||L'âne de Zigliara||Himself - Lui-même|
- Brown, Marisa. "Tino Rossi profile". AllMusic.com. Retrieved 29 March 2011.
- Last biography on Tino Rossi by Emmanuel Bonini, Le Vrai Tino, Didier Carpentier editor, 2013.
- Laurent Rossi and Anne-Sophie Simonet, Tino - L'Étoile éternelle (foreword of Mrs Marcel Pagnol), Nice-Matin editor, 2013.
- The hero of the cartoon refers in particular to the success Tchi-Tchi (1936).
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Tino Rossi.|
- "Raquel Bitton - de Piaf a Tino Rossi, frenchmorning.com; accessed 26 August 2015. (in French)
- Rossi profile, fundacionjoseguillermocarrillo.com; accessed 26 August 2015. (in Spanish)
- Tino Rossi on IMDb
- Tino Rossi at Find a Grave
- Tino Rossi biography, dutempsdescerisesauxfeuillesmortes.net; accessed 26 August 2015. (in French)
- Amazon.com profile; accessed 26 August 2015.