Domenico Modugno

Domenico Modugno
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Domenico Modugno

Domenico Modugno (Polignano a Mare, January 9, 1928 – Lampedusa, August 6, 1994) was an Italian singer-songwriter, composer, guitarist and actor. He represented Italy on several occasions in the Eurovision Song Contest. He was also a deputy and leader of the Italian Radical Party.

Domenico Modugno in the film Anni facili (Zampa, 1953).

Domenico Modugno in the film La capa roja (1955).

Domenico Modugno on a 1958 newscast.

Alberto Lupo, Antonello Falqui and Doménico Modugno at the Teatro 10 (1971).

Domenico_Modugno’s Biography

From a young age, Doménico wanted to be an actor. In 1951, after finishing military service and thanks to a scholarship, he accessed the Experimental Cinematography Center in Rome, appearing later in a few films. After starring Il mantello rosso (La capa roja), he began his career as a singer. He married Franca Gandolfi and they have 3 children: Marco (1958), Marcello and Massimo Modugno (1966), the latter also dedicated to music. Domenico has a son from an extra marital relationship called Fabio Camilli (1962)


In the 1950s it became very popular in the United States. He became one of the protagonists of international melodic music when, with “Nel blu dipinto di blu” (better known as “Volare”), he triumphed at the San Remo Festival of 1958 with Johnny Dorelli. With this same song, the Eurovision Song Contest of the same year also participated, being in third position (out of ten).

Modugno’s song “Volare” (also called “Nel blu dipinto di blu”) was a commercial success internationally, and over time became one of the most representative in Italian music history. < / p>

«Nel blu dipinto di blu» reached number one in the Hot 100 of the American magazine Billboard, and the same publication would later recognize it as the best single of 1958. Thanks to «Volare», Modugno became the first Grammy Award winner for recording of the year and song of the year in 1959.

It was such an extraordinary success that L’Espresso, an Italian newspaper, titled its first page: “Modugno has conquered America”, and by the end of that year the sales of it increased, breaking all the records for a disc Italian until then: up to 0.8 million copies in Italy and another 22 million in the world.


In 1960 he was accused of plagiarizing the song of an opera composer, although he was declared innocent. He won the San Remo Festival three times with “Piove” (1959, again with Johnny Dorelli), “Addio, addio” (1962, in the company of Claudio Villa) and “Dio, come ti amo” (1966, together with Gigliola). Cinquetti). In Eurovision he participated again in 1959 and 1966.

A theatrical and cinematographic actor, appeared in the musical comedy Rinaldo in campo (1961), by Garinei e Giovannini, and in Liolà, adaptation of the famous opera by Luigi Pirandello. In the cinema he played Il giudizio universale by Vittorio De Sica, while from 1973 to 1976 he was Mackie Messer in the opera da tre soldi by Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht, directed by Giorgio Strehler. Pier Paolo Pasolini used songs by Modugno for the soundtrack of Pajaritos and Pajarracos, one of his key films.

More Facts about Domenico Modugno

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