ANTOINETTE TISA was born Antoinette Rose Lavazio on April 30, 1913 to Charles and Anna Tissa Lavazio, one of three children. When here mother died in the influenza epidemic of 1918, her father could not take care of the children, and he placed Antoinette and brother Tony at Saint Michael's Orphanage in Hopewell NJ. Older sister Anne was placed as a domestic servant, also in Hopewell. While at the orphanage, she began singing.
After moving to South Camden as a teenager, she met and married Dominick Tisa, who had a barbershop at 503 South 3rd Street, near Berkley Street known as Tisa's London Barber Shop. By the 1940s the family had settled at 969 Monitor Road, in the Fairview section of Camden.
Antoinette Tisa pursued her operatic singing career in Philadelphia and South Jersey from the 1940s through the 1960s, starring in operas such as Aida, La Traviata, and Faust. She also was a featured soloist in various churches in Camden throughout her career.
Antoinette Tisa later moved to Cherry Hill NJ. She passed away in May of 1993.
Anoinette Tisa's brother-in-law, John Tisa, had an interesting career which included taking part in the Spanish Civil War, working as a labor organizer, and as the owner of Tisa's Pet Shop in Pennsauken NJ for many years.
Many thanks to Benedict Tisa for his assistance in creating this page.
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