Torelli, Giacomo [Jacopo]
- Manfred Boetzkes
(b ?Fano, Sept 1, 1608; dFano, June 17, 1678). Italian stage designer, engineer and architect. He was probably trained as an architect and engineer, but he may also have been a pupil of the stage designers Niccolò Sabbatini and Francesco Guitti. He was working as an engineer in the Venice Arsenal around 1640, when he designed the Teatro Novissimo, Venice’s fourth public opera house, built in 1641. He invented a new system of stage machinery which for the first time enabled the whole set to be changed in one operation: the wings were supported on undercarriages running on rails beneath the stage, and were moved by turning a central roller to which the undercarriages were attached by ropes. In the next few years Torelli designed the sets for all the operas staged in the Teatro Novissimo, and occasionally worked for the Teatro di SS Giovanni e Paolo as well. Summoned to Paris in ...