Opera Star Salvatore Licitra Dies

Italian opera star Salvatore Licitra has died of injuries suffered in a scooter accident 10 days ago. The singer was pronounced clinically dead on Monday in a hospital in Sicily. He was 43.
The tenor had fallen into a coma after sustaining severe chest and head injuries when his Vespa crashed into a wall on 27 August (11). Licitra became an overnight sensation in 2002 when he made his debut at New York's Metropolitan Opera, filling in for Luciano Pavarotti when the opera veteran pulled out of a production of Tosca just two hours before show time. Revered American conductor James Conlon, who oversaw Licitra's last performance in July (11) at Illinois' Ravinia Festival, has paid tribute to the star. Conlon tells the Los Angeles Times, "I was a big supporter of Salvatore from the beginning... and it's astonishing to have been with him singing three to four weeks ago and now he's gone. He was an important voice."