On 7 January 1956 Anita sang in “La Gioconda” for the first time in a production mounted by the Comunale. Her partners were Ebe Stiganani, Lucia Danieli, Gianni Poggi and Ettore Bastianini. All four performances were sold out and again, Cerquetti was a headline name in Italy’s periodicals.
On the 26th, she appeared in concert for Milan’s Radio Station and sang “Ebben”, “La fatal pietra”, “Anch’io dischiuso” and “La Mamma Morta”. This concert has been preserved on both LP and CD and shows Cerquetti at her very best. The voice is in superb condition and the singing itself is of an order rarely heard. There is an inexhaustible supply of power coupled with her justly famous ease of emission and repose. The top register is thrillingly vibrant and the lower register appears as the natural extension of a completely integrated voice.
In February, Anita traveled to Avignon and Marseilles for “Il Trovatore” and on the 26th she sang in “Aida” at the Fenice of Venice with Adriana Lazzarini, Corelli and Aldo Protti.
On 23 March, Anita debuted at Lisbon’s Sao Carlo in “Don Carlo” with Simionato, Bergonzi, Giuseppi Taddei and Christoff to enormous acclaim and in April she recorded “Guglielmo Tell” for the Milan Radio Studio. Dietrich Fischer Dieskau, Gianni Jaia and Giuseppe Modesti were her unfortunate partners, though her contribution is everything for which one might hope.