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Susan Parisi

Member of Caccini family

(b Florence, Oct 6, 1591; d Florence, c1660). Italian soprano and composer, younger daughter of Giulio Caccini. According to Severo Bonini, she established ‘an immortal reputation’, having ‘mastered to perfection the art of singing’. She was taught to sing and compose by her father, and by 1600 was performing at the Florentine court. Although not mentioned by name, she and her elder sister Francesca are undoubtedly the ‘figliuole’ of Giulio Caccini who sang in Il rapimento di Cefalo in October 1600 for the marriage of Maria de’ Medici and Henri IV of France. Four years later, at the invitation of Maria de’ Medici, the Caccini family spent six months in Paris, performing at the courts of Modena and Turin en route. It was once thought that Settimia went to Mantua in 1608 to sing in Monteverdi’s L’Arianna but it is now known that the singer was another Florentine woman. In ...