Punto, Giovanni [Stich, Johann Wenzel (Jan Václav)]
- Reginald Morley-Pegge
- , revised by Horace Fitzpatrick
- and Thomas Hiebert
[Stich, Johann Wenzel (Jan Václav)]
(b Zehušice, nr Čáslav, Sept 28, 1746; d Prague, Feb 16, 1803). Bohemian horn player, violinist and composer. His master Count Thun sent him to study the horn, first under Josef Matiegka at Prague, then with Jan Schindelarž at Dobříš; he completed his studies (c1763/4) in Dresden under A.J. Hampel, whose hand-stopping technique he later improved and extended. After his return home (1764) he served the count for four years and then ran away with four colleagues, crossing the border into the Holy Roman Empire, where he assumed his Italian pseudonym. He began travelling through Europe in 1768, breaking new ground as a touring horn virtuoso. He visited England in early 1772, performing at least ten times in London, most often as a concerto soloist (LS). Punto's use of hand-stopping was criticized by some in London (New Instructions; LS), probably because it was still novel, but others were more favourable, such as Burney, who wrote from Koblenz in July or ...