Tito Gobbi (24 October 1913 – 5 March 1984) was an Italian operatic baritone with an international reputation.
He made his operatic debut in Gubbio in 1935 as Count Rodolfo in Bellini's La sonnambula and quickly appeared in Italy's major opera houses. By the time he retired in 1979 he had acquired a repertoire of almost 100 operatic roles. They ranged from Mozart's mid-range baritone roles through Rossini's Barber through Donizetti and the standard Verdi and Puccini baritone roles to Alban Berg's Wozzeck. He had a worldwide career as operatic baritone, appearing in (or recording the singing role) for over 25 films and, from the mid-1960s onward, was the stage director for about ten different operas which were given close to 35 productions throughout Europe and North America, including a significant number in Chicago for the Lyric Opera of Chicago.
Gobbi and his wife, Tilde De Rensis, had a daughter, Cecilia, who now runs the "Associazione Musicale Tito Gobbi", an organization devoted to preserving and celebrating the record of her father's contribution to opera. He was also the brother-in-law of one of his famous colleagues at Covent Garden, the Bulgarian-born bass, Boris Christoff. Gobbi retired in 1979 and died in Rome in 1984, aged 70.
Tito Gobbi was born in Bassano del Grappa. He began his studies in law at the University of Padua and, during that time, his talent was discovered by a family friend, Baron Agostino Zanchetta, who suggested that he study singing. To do so, Gobbi moved to Rome in 1932 to study under Giulio Crimi, a well-known Italian tenor of a previous generation, who had sung in the first performances of Puccini's Il trittico as well as in Zandonai's Francesca da Rimini. Accompanying Gobbi on the piano at his first audition was Tilde De Rensis, daughter of musicologist Raphael De Rensis. In 1937, she became his wife.