Obituaries: Armando Trovajoli, Bobby Rogers

Armando Trovajoli

Prolific Italian film and musical composer Armando Trovajoli, who scored more than 200 movies over six decades, including Vittorio De Sica’s Oscar-winner “Two Women,” played with jazz greats such as Louis Armstrong, and wrote a hit serenade to Rome covered recently by Andrea Bocelli, died in Rome on Saturday, age 95.

Trovajoli’s widow, Maria Paola Trovajoli, announced his passing saying the maestro worked up until his death.

Born in Rome in 1917, Trovajoli graduated from the city’s Santa Cecilia Conservatory in 1948 and began playing jazz piano in Rome and Paris where, among others, he performed with Armstrong, Duke Ellington and Miles Davis, before becoming conductor of pubcaster RAI’s pop orchestra in the early 1950s.

In 1951, Dino De Laurentiis gave Trovajoli his first film scoring gig on Alberto Lattuada’s hit drama “Anna,” kicking off a remarkable career in Italian and international cinema.

Trovajoli composed two hit songs for “Anna,” “El negro zumbon” and “Non dimenticar,” the latter covered in Italian by Nat King Cole.

He went on to work closely with many of Italy’s finest postwar helmers, most notably Ettore Scola, Dino Risi, Mario Monicelli, Mauro Bolognini and De Sica on hit movies of all genres.

He penned scores for several of Sophia Loren’s films, including De Sica’s 1960 “Two Women” (which won Loren an Oscar), his 1963 “Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow,” and Scola’s 1977 Fascist-era drama “A Special Day.”

In 1957, Loren sang Trovajoli-penned pop song “Che m’e mparato a ffa,” which hit No.1 that year on the Italo charts.

But his biggest pop success was “Roma nun fa’ la stupida stasera,” an ode to the Italian capital written for the 1962 hit musical “Rugantino,” which played on Broadway in 1964.

Trovajoli’s “Roma,” the title of which can be translated as “Rome, don’t act silly tonight,” became the Italian capital’s theme song, requested by tourists and covered by Bocelli in his album “Passione,” released in January.

Trovajoli, who was working on a satirical version of Puccini’s “Tosca” when he died, won four David Awards, Italy’s top film honors, among other prizes.

He is survived by his wife and two sons, Howard Andrew and Giorgio. — Nick Vivarelli

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Bobby Rogers

Bobby Rogers, a founding member of Motown group the Miracles and a collaborator with Smokey Robinson, died Sunday. He was 73.

Motown Museum board member Allen Rawls said Rogers died at his home in Southfield, Mich.

Rogers had been ill for several years.

Rogers formed the group in 1956 with cousin Claudette Rogers, Pete Moore, Ronnie White and Robinson. Their hits included “I Second That Emotion” and “The Tears of a Clown.” Rogers and the Miracles were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012.

He shared songwriting credits with Robinson on the Temptations’ “The Way You Do the Things You Do,” The Contours’ “First I Look at the Purse” and the Miracles’ “Going to a Go-Go.”

Stanley Snadowsky

Stanley Snadowsky, a Broadway producer and co-owner of the famed New York nightclub the Bottom Line, died in Las Vegas on Feb. 25 due to diabetic complications. He was 70.

After graduating from Brooklyn Law School in 1967, the Brooklyn-born Snadowsky and his business partner Allan Pepper became joint music promoters at The Village Gate, Gerde’s Folk City, Steve Paul’s the Scene and the Electric Circus.

In 1974, the partners unveiled their Greenwich nightclub the Bottom Line, with opening night sets by Stevie Wonder, Johnny Winter and Dr. John.

Snadowsky and Pepper operated the nightclub for 30 years until 2004 and also worked to create a “Bottom Line” nightclub in Nagoya, Japan.

Snadowsky is survived by his wife Michelle, two daughters and a brother. — Michael Palumbo

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