Did You Know?
Puccini died in 1924, while working on "Turandot"; he got as far as the scene in which a major character commits suicide to avoid cracking under torture, but Frederico Alfano completed it, and most critics feel that Puccini would have handled the awkward moment in the ending far better than Alfano did. One of those who believed this was conductor Arturo Toscanini, a friend of Puccini's, who led the work's world premiere in 1926. Immediately after the suicide scene, he laid down his baton and with tears in his eyes, spoke to the audience for the only time in his life: "Here Maestro Puccini laid down his pen. Death was stronger than art". Toscanini then left the orchestra pit. See more
Referenced in The Turandot Project