Johnny Dorelli continues to be a beloved and respected figure in the Italian entertainment industry.
His unique talent, captivating performances, and memorable songs have made him a true icon in Italian music and film.
Johnny Dorelli’s Biography
Giorgio Guidi, better known by his stage name Johnny Dorelli, was born on February 20, 1937, in Meda, Italy.
He is an Italian actor, musician, and television host who has had a long and successful career.
Dorelli’s family relocated to New York City in 1946, where his father, opera singer Nino D’Aurelio, found work. Dorelli attended the High School of Music and Art in New York, where she studied double bass and piano.
During this period, he was spotted by bandleader Percy Faith, who invited him to appear on The Ken Murray Show. Dorelli later performed on Robert Alda’s show By Popular Demand, accompanied by Paul Whiteman.
His talent was lauded, with American tabloids dubbing him a “phenomenal Italian boy.” Dorelli, however, returned to Italy in 1955 when his residence permit expired.
Dorelli made her debut as a vocalist and pianist with the CGD label in the late 1950s. He sang songs like “Lover,” “What is this thing called love,” and “Love me or leave me.”
His first huge hit was the easy-listening Latin tune “Calypso melody” in 1957. In 1958 and 1959, he and Domenico Modugno won the prestigious Sanremo Festival in duo, performing “Nel blu dipinto di blu” (also known as “Volare”) and “Piove (Ciao ciao bambina).”
Dorelli’s most well-known songs from this time period are “Julia,” “Boccuccia Di Rosa” (Pink Lips), “Love in Portofino,” “Lettera A Pinocchio,” and “Monte Carlo.”
Dorelli rose to international prominence after appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1962, singing his silky ballad “Love In Portofino” and performing “You’re the Top” with Connie Francis and Johnny Hallyday.
He continues to sing countless songs live on television shows in both Italian and English as a popular and jazz crooner.
Dorelli had another big hit with the song “L’immensità” at the Sanremo Song Festival in 1967. He also dabbled in acting, landing the lead role in How to Kill 400 Duponts, a parody of the comic series Diabolik.
This portrayal earned him a lot of praise, and he even inspired the character of Paperinik.
During this time, some of his other hit songs included “Speedy Gonzales,” “Era Settembre,” “Probabilmente,” “Al Buio Sto Sognando,” “Solo Più Che Mai (Strangers In The Night),” “Arriva La Bomba,” and “I Think of You.”
Dorelli’s greatest triumph came with the musical Aggiungi un posto a tavola, which was also produced in an English version named Beyond the Rainbow at the Adelphi Theatre in London’s West End in 1978. After a hiatus, he made a successful comeback in the 1980s.
In 1983, he played St. Philip Neri in Luigi Magni’s television picture State buoni se potete, and in 2004, he appeared in Pupi Avati’s film Ma quando arrivano le ragazze.
Dorelli returned to the Sanremo stage as a contestant in 2007, after 38 years, with the song “Meglio cos.” He had a colourful personal life in addition to being a great and diverse musician.
Dorelli was previously married to actress Lauretta Masiero, with whom he had a son named Gianluca Guidi. From 1972 to 1979, he was married to actress Catherine Spaak, with whom he had a son named Gabriele.
He married Gloria Guida, a former model and actress, in 1991, and the couple had a daughter named Guendalina.
Who Is Johnny Dorelli’s First Wife?
Johnny Dorelli’s first wife is known as actress Lauretta Masiero, with whom he has a son named Gianluca Guidi.