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Thomas Bauman

(b Graz, Nov 19, 1722; d Vienna, May 18, 1809). Austrian librettist. Educated in medicine at the University of Vienna, he made a name for himself as the inventor of the percussion method of diagnosing diseases of the chest cavity (1761). In ...

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(b Kitzbühel, bap. Feb 21, 1665; d Passau, bur. Jan 24, 1742). Austrian composer. His main appointment was in Passau, where he succeeded Georg Muffat as court Kapellmeister in 1705. He spent his early years in Vienna, where he may have been a pupil of Johannes Ebner (a member of the well-known family of organ players and son of Wolfgang Ebner) whom he declared his model. Apparently he came into contact with members of the Viennese nobility, and he may have been employed at a court. In a letter of ...

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Christoph Henzel

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Renato Bossa

(b Naples, 1723; d Naples, 1753). Italian composer and organist, son of Pietro Auletta. He was active in Naples as a composer of sacred music, but nothing is known of any appointments he may have held. Domenico's three sons were also musicians: Raffaele (...

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James L. Jackman and Enrico Careri

(b Naples, c1710; d Rome, 3/Sept 4, 1781). Italian composer. He studied in Rome, according to Giazotto, and supported himself by playing the organ in various Roman churches. Then, like so many southern Italian composers of his generation, he made his professional début in Naples with a comic opera in the Teatro dei Fiorentini, in ...

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Harris S. Saunders

(b Bergamo; d ?Turin, by aut. 1720). Italian librettist. In Bergamo, he was a member of the Accademia degli Arioni. By 1686 he had moved to Venice and in 1687 he moved to Turin, by which time he was an abbate. In 1692...

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Christoph Timpe

(b Naples, ?1670; d Naples, March 19, 1756). Italian composer and violinist. He came from a musical family and was a member of the Neapolitan court orchestra from the late 1690s until his death. His two sets of sonate da chiesa (opp.1 and 2) are notable for their fugal movements, in which the violone shares the counterpoint with the violins, while the continuo remains independent. This principle is systematized in his op.3, which in its instrumentation is based on a model established in Naples at the end of the 17th century by composers such as Pietro Marchitelli and Giancarlo Cailò. In each sonata a brilliant first movement is followed by a three-part fugue, which is separated from a lively closing dance by a short, lyrical movement, usually in 3/2. Avitrano's works show a highly developed sense of tonal effect, particularly his op.3, in which the violins are independent of each other and often complement each other by playing in the same register. Although his violin music does not require technical brilliance from the players, it does demand a sound mastery of the bow, especially in the dance movements. His capacity for invention is limited, particularly in the slow movements, in which the thematic material is often similar to that in other slow movements of his. His harmonic development is conventional but lively. Avitrano's importance lies in his contribution to the four-part sonata, the leading genre in Neapolitan violin music....

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(b ? Mainz or Frankfurt; fl 1727–46). German soprano. She sang in the Peruzzi company at Brussels, 1727–8, and was at Hamburg in 1729, where she sang Cleopatra in Handel’s Giulio Cesare and Rodelinda in Telemann’s Flavius Bertaridus. The same year she was engaged by Fortunato Chelleri as a singer at the court of Kassel. The librettos recording her two appearances at the Sporck theatre in Prague during the ...

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James L. Jackman and Dale E. Monson

(b Paola, nr Cosenza, 1708; d Naples, Jan 9, 1796). Italian composer. He is often confused with his contemporary Girolamo Abos, several of whose opere serie are sometimes attributed to him. The family is reputed to have been of Spanish origin. His father was in the service of Spinelli, Duke of Fuscaldo, and (according to Mondolfi, ...

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Winton Dean

( fl 1698–1708). Italian soprano . Sometimes known as ‘La Valentina’, and probably of Ferrarese birth, her first known appearance was in Crema in 1698. She was employed at the Mantuan court until she entered the service of Ferdinando de’ Medici at Pratolino in 1700...

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Carolyn Gianturco

(b Lucca, 1690; d Lucca, c1766). Italian composer. He was a priest, and although he was probably maestro di musica at the Seminary of S Giovanni e Reparata in Lucca by 1712, the first certain notice of him there is in 1725...

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Christoph Wolff, Walter Emery, Peter Wollny, Ulrich Leisinger and Stephen Roe

German family of musicians. From the 16th century to the 19th the extensive Saxon-Thuringian Bach family produced an unparalleled and almost incalculable number of musicians of every kind, from fiddlers and town musicians to organists, Kantors, court musicians and Kapellmeisters. The outstanding figure among them was Johann Sebastian Bach, but a great many other well-known and distinguished musicians were born into earlier, contemporary and later generations of the family....

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Jean-Charles Léon

(b 1703; d Angers, 1782). French composer. He received his musical education in the Angers choir school, which he left in 1723 to become an adult chorister. On 14 November 1724 he was a candidate for the post of maître de chapelle to succeed Louis Vigné, and it is likely that he was appointed to the post and occupied it until ...

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Peter Ross

(b Zürich, Dec 26, 1695; d Zürich, June 23, 1755). Swiss composer and music pedagogue. The year of his birth has been given incorrectly in some sources as 1697. His father Joseph, originally a tailor and from 1692 a schoolteacher, planned a theological training for Johann Caspar, who was his second son. After study at the cathedral school, the Collegium Humanitatis, and (from ...

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Lawrence E. Bennett

(b probably Verona, 1672; d Vienna, Sept 23, 1738). Italian composer. His earliest known work is the oratorio La sete di Cristo in croce, a sepolcro written for Innsbruck in 1691. At the begining of 1692 he may have lived in Rome, where his earliest secular dramatic works were produced. By spring ...

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Barbara Dobbs Mackenzie

(fl 1729–62). Italian bass and impresario. He was one of the most popular comic opera singers of his day and a particularly important figure in the development and dissemination of the genre in the middle of the century. He performed in at least 100 productions beginning in the late 1720s, when he sang intermezzos in Foligno and Pesaro. He launched his comic opera career in Rome in ...

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(fl 1726–43). Italian contralto. She was a Florentine in the employment of the Grand Duchess of Tuscany, and married to the tenor G.B. Pinacci (1732). She sang in Florence (1725–6), Bologna (1726–8), Livorno (1727), Naples (...

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Hans Joachim Marx

(bc 1700; d after 1726). German bass . He was mentioned in the Hamburg Relations-Courier (4 Dec 1724) as ‘the new bass Mons. Bahn’, who was billed to sing Argante in Handel’s Rinaldo at the Gänsemarkt theatre. He had previously made his début as Mars on 2 November in Giovanni Porta’s ...

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Philip J. Kass

(b Füssen, Bavaria, May 10, 1712; d Naples, Feb 5, 1763). German violin maker. He moved to Naples early in his career. His violins closely resemble those of the Gagliano family, particularly Nicola, suggesting that he learnt his craft in that workshop. The relative scarcity of his work (only violins are known) is probably due to his short lifespan. His instruments are usually on the small side, in conformity with the Gaglianos’. His varnish is typically Neapolitan and ranges from deep red-orange to gold. He appears to have used the same printed label throughout his career, with his initials contained in a circle following the date. There is also at least one example branded on the button with the letters ‘G B N’ (his initials and city) enclosed in a shield....