- William V. Porter
(b Arezzo, May 14, 1574; d Mantua, Nov 30, 1621). Italian composer, tenor, chitarrone player and poet. He was born into a prominent family, which later served the Medici and Gonzaga courts. In October 1592 he enrolled at the University of Pisa and in the summer of 1594 he was a pupil of Giulio Caccini. During the early 1590s he performed in Rome under the patronage of Grand Duke Ferdinando I of Tuscany. Emilio de’ Cavalieri, in a letter from Rome dated 16 December 1593, reported Rasi’s great success as a singer and chitarrone player and urged the grand duke to increase his salary, since he was being considered for other positions. In 1594 he may have entered the service of Gesualdo and subsequently travelled to Ferrara, Venice and Naples. He made a trip to Poland, returning to Italy by November 1597. In a letter of 17 November 1598...