The Mario Lanza Educational Foundation

Registered Charity No: 272217


william earl


Ellisa Lanza-Bregman; Bobby Bregman;

Jose Carreras;  Dave Dennison; 


Derek Wheldon (chairman)

(5 Hunters close; manor park; dinnington; sheffield; south yorkshire; s25 2tn)

Jackie lane (vice-chairman & Treasurer)

Jeffrey Benton (Vocal Consultant)



trustees:  as above, plus Judith Earl; sylvia montague


The following information will introduce you to the work of the MARIO LANZA EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION. It is quite likely that you have never heard of this charity. We hope we can put this right by explaining its purpose and hopefully persuade you to help us further its aims.


MARIO LANZA was an American tenor born in Philadelphia in 1921. His original intention was to make his career on the operatic stage, but he allowed himself to be diverted to Hollywood. He made seven films, including Hollywood's version of Enrico Caruso's life story and recorded the soundtrack of another - The Student Prince. The decision to move into films was questionable. Whilst the cinema allowed him to achieve one of his main aims - to bring opera to the man in the street - the critics saw it as a serious lapse of professional integrity and could not forgive him.

If Lanza was a "lost cause" to the critics, he was a revelation to millions of others.  Both Jose Carreras, Placido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti, have all admitted to Mario being their inspiration, and Carreras in particular says he would not be singing now if it were not for seeing Mario in "The Great Caruso".  Pavarotti was a patron of the Foundation before his death, and Carreras is still a patron, as is Mario's daughter, Ellisa Lanza Bregman. He died at the tragically early age of 38 years, but thanks to his legacy, interest in opera grew and is still growing, and that's where we come in ...


The MARIO LANZA EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION was established in 1976 to advance the musical education of singers by awards and scholarships, and at the same time to perpetuate the memory of MARIO LANZA.

The Foundation holds an annual competition in conjunction with the Birmingham Conservatoire. A monetary award is presented to both the winner, runner-up, and third place.  (1st £1,000; 2nd £500;  3rd£300).

In addition, monetary awards are awarded to deserving applicants during the year who live in the UK and are studying singing full-time at a college or conservatoire. If you feel you would like to be considered for a grant, please forward by post to the Vocal Consultant at the address below, with contact details, along with a recording, either a CD or tape to:

 Jeffrey Benton
Vocal Consultant
Bridge Farm
TF6 6HS     
      The Foundation is a registered Charity and a copy of the Charity’s accounts is forwarded to the Charity Commission each year.

For more details on how to become a Friend of the Foundation, or to send a donation, please Email for details.

email: MLEF

Report on the Annual Awards May 2018

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