Farinelli, Carlo Broschi (kärˈlō brôˈskē färēnĕlˈlē) [key], 1705–82, Italian male soprano, greatest of the castrati (see castrato), pupil of Niccolò Porpora, in whose operas he sang (1734–37) in London. Farinelli's real name was Carlo Broschi. Having won fame in France and Italy, he became (1737) official singer to Philip V of Spain and renounced his public career. His sole duty was to sing the same four songs each night to the king, from whom he received an astronomical fee. He enjoyed a highly favored position in Spain until 1759, when he retired to a castle near Bologna.
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