Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 10 December 2019

Billoni [Biyoni, Billonij, Villoni, Vioni], Santiago locked

  • Drew Edward Davies


(b Rome, c1700; d Mexico, c1763). Composer and violinist of Italian birth active in New Spain. The first Italian named chapelmaster of a cathedral in New Spain (colonial Mexico), Billoni wrote music notable for its virtuosic violin parts and chromaticism.

The continuo part to Billoni’s cantada Obedeciendo a leyes/¿Podrá la influencia?, a contrafactum of his Divina madre/¿Podrás sin ternura?, identifies the composer as Roman, a characterization substantiated by his musical style. Likely related to the Biglioni family of instrument makers in early 18th-century Rome, Billoni seems to have left Europe in the mid-1730s for New Spain. From the record of Billoni’s marriage to María Ramírez de Cartagena conserved at Guadalajara Cathedral, Mexico, it is known that Billoni was the legitimate son of Santiago Billoni, originally of Turin, and Anna Maria Gies of Lucerne. (“Santiago” may be a variant of the Italian “Giacomo” in Spanish language documents.) He served as violinist at Guadalajara Cathedral between ...

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.