Nobody seems to know exactly what Battaglia did early in his career. Kutsch & Riemens mention, very unspecifically, the "Italian provinces", but in fact, his only records were made in Germany in 1925, so he must have spent some time there. Anyway, it took him a few years to arrive at the more famous Italian theaters: in 1930, he sang in Rome for the first time (Mateo in Conchita by Zandonai, and not Manrico, as fancied by Kutsch & Riemens – his Rome Manrico came only in 1940), in 1931 at the San Carlo in Naples, in 1933 in Monte Carlo and at Covent Garden, plus he was (again) in Berlin at the Städtische Oper. In 1936, he made his Scala debut in Giordano's Siberia; he would return to La Scala time and again until 1948 (Calaf, Pollione, Canio). In 1937, he was Calaf at the Arena di Verona, and sang at the Monnaie in Brussels. He was active into the 1950s; at the Terme di Caracalla in 1953, there were six performances of Pagliacci, three with Corelli as Canio, one with Del Monaco – and two with Battaglia.
Deutsche Grammophon AG/Polydor, Berlin, July 1925 (already electrical!)
Francesco Battaglia's repertory
Reference 1: The Record Collector, volume 42, no. 3; reference 2: Kutsch & Riemens; reference 3: Gesellschaft für historische Tonträger, Wien; reference 4: archives of the Opera di Roma