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Nilla Pizzi
Nilla Pizzi - alias Adionilla Pizzi - (Sant'Agata Bolognese, April 16th, 1919) is an Italian singer. Fortified by her versatile, vital and brilliant artist verve, in addition to be a singer with a sound vocal style, she is still working on musical nights and afternoons all over Italy. Even before the songs world, Pizzi highlighted herself in beauty contests' field which, at the end of the 30's, began to appear. She won the competition "Cinquemila lire per un sorriso", created in 1939 by the painter and graphic designer Dino Villani, a competition which was, in some way, forerunner of future "Miss Italia", a manifestation that started only after the war. In 1942 Nilla Pizzi won, in front of ten thousand candidates, an EIAR competition (future RAI-Radiotelevisione Italiana) and began performing with Zeme orchestra. Removed from radio because of her voice considered too sensuous by Fascist Regime, she came back in 1946 with the orchestra of maestro Cinico Angelini, whom she got married in the meantime. She started to gain the first successes with "O mama mama", "Dopo di te", "Che si fa con le fanciulle?", "Bongo bongo", "Avanti e indrč", "Oh papŕ". In 1951 she won the first Festival di Sanremo with "Grazie dei fior", coming second with "La luna si veste d'argento", sung together with Achille Togliani. On the following year she won out again gaining the whole podium respectively with "Vola colomba", "Papaveri e papere" and "Una donna prega". Movies, radio shows, hits and gossip love stories (singer Gino Latilla even tried to suicide for her), made her the queen of Italian song. In 1952 Festival di Napoli was born, and she won with "Desiderio 'e sole", then on the following year she came second at Sanremo with "Campanaro", together with Teddy Reno. In 1957 she won at Festival di Velletri with "Dicembre m'ha portato una canzone" together with Nunzio Gallo, and on the following year she came second and third, too at Sanremo (she is the only singer who was successful in undermining Domenico Modugno's boom), respectively with "L'edera" and "Amare un altro", presented again by Tonina Torrielli and Gino Latilla. In 1959 she won at Canzonissima (with "L'edera"), at Festival di Barcellona (together with Claudio Villa who presented "Binario") the Premio della Critica del Festival della canzone italiana (Premio della Critica Sanremese) (with Adorami). She also succeed in coming third at Festival di Napoli with "Vieneme 'nzuonno" together with Sergio Bruni. In 1960 she came back to Festival di Sanremo gaining the finalwith the song "Colpevole" together with Tonina Torrielli but she didn't with the song "Perdoniamoci", presented again by Achille Togliani. During the 60's, with the coming of "urlatori", she was put aside by new musical tendencies; nevertheless she will have succeed in going on gaining successes under RCA's protection. In 1962 she appeared at the first Cantagiro, where she sang "Un mondo per noi", her colleagues present at that time were Luciano Tajoli (a great friend of her), Adriano Celentano, Claudio Villa, Miranda Martino, Nunzio Gallo, Tonina Torrielli, Donatella Moretti. In 1972 her album "Con tanta nostalgia" won the Premio della Critica Discografica, in 1981 Gianni Ravera called her to present Festival di Sanremo. In the 90's she was often Paolo Limiti's special guest for his show at RAI (Ci vediamo in tv, then Alle 2 on Raiuno), where she re-interpreted over 500 songs of all kinds and repertoires. She has been often the guest of TV shows as a singer and commentator. In 2003 she won a prestigious prize for her career.  
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