- Category : 1919-births
- Type : MGE
- Profile : 2/4 - Hermit / Opportunist
- Definition : Split - Small (43)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Contagion 2
Bulgarian opera singer, widely considered to have been one of the greatest basses of the 20th century.
He made his operatic debut as Colline in La bohème at Reggio Calabria on 12 March 1946. Christoff later appeared in a number of roles at Milan's La Scala, Venice's La Fenice, the Rome Opera, Covent Garden in London, the opera theatres in Naples, Barcelona, Lisbon, Rio de Janeiro, etc.
In 1950, he was invited to sing at the Metropolitan Opera in New York but was refused entry into the USA as a result of the McCarran Immigration Act, which banned citizens of Eastern bloc countries from entering the country. After the restrictions were loosened, Christoff made an operatic debut in the United States in 1956 at the San Francisco Opera. He refused any further invitations to the Metropolitan and never appeared there. After a brief absence from the scene due to brain tumour surgery in 1964, Christoff resumed his career in 1965, though at a much slower pace. In 1967, he was allowed to return to Bulgaria for the first time since 1945, for the funeral of his mother.
Christoff brought his career to an end with a final concert at the Accademia di Bulgaria in Rome on 22 June 1986. He died in Rome on 28 June 1993.