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Pierluigi Petrobelli

(b Pirano, Istria [now Piran, Istra, Slovenia], April 8, 1692; d Padua, Feb 26, 1770). Italian composer, violinist, teacher and theorist.

Tartini's father Giovanni Antonio, of Florentine origin, was general manager of the salt mills in Pirano. Giuseppe, destined for the church by his pious parents, was to have been first a minore conventuale, a branch of the Franciscan order, and subsequently a full priest. To this end he was educated in his native town and then in nearby Capodistria (now Koper, Slovenia) at the scuole pie; as well as the humanities and rhetoric, he studied the rudiments of music. In 1708 he left his native region, never to live there again, but carrying in his memory the peculiarities of the local musical folklore. He enrolled as a law student at Padua University, where he devoted most of his time, always dressed as a priest, to improving his fencing, a practice in which, according to contemporary accounts, few could compete with him. This account of Tartini's youth has been questioned (see, for instance, Capri), but it is supported by contemporary evidence and is consistent with the later development of his personality, characterized by a fiery and stubborn temperament with a strong tendency towards mysticism. These qualities are equally evident in his writings – both letters and theoretical works – and in his compositions....


Arend Koole

revised by Albert Dunning

(b Rimini, c 1690; d ?Amsterdam, after Dec 15, 1766). Italian violinist and composer. The earliest known reference to him is in a charter of 15 December 1720, where he is mentioned as a violinist in the cappella of S Marco, Venice: his work here is documented up to 1735. Between 1723 and 1730 he was active in the Ospedale dei Derelitti, Venice, and his Sonate op.1 (Venice, 1729) names him maestro de’ concerti there. In 1731 he applied for a post at Urbino Cathedral, where his presence is documented from 1733: his involvement there was interrupted several times for various journeys. From 27 December 1738 there is again documentation of his activities at Urbino Cathedral, but in the preceding years he seems to have been direttore della musica instromentale at the court of Cardinal Wolfgang Hannibal von Schrattenbach in Brno (as indicated in his Sei sonate...


Brian Boydell

[Burke of Thomond ]

( fl 1739–50). Irish music editor, composer and instrumentalist . The earliest known references to him occur in Dublin newspapers in 1739 and 1740, when he appeared as a soloist playing concertos on the trumpet and the flute. He also performed in England as a flautist, appearing for instance at Ruckholt House, Leyton, on 14 May 1744.

About 1745–50 he issued two books which provide one of the earliest printed sources of Irish traditional airs. The first consisted of 12 Scots and 12 Irish airs, the second of 12 English and 12 Irish airs. Both books, which contain ‘Variations, set for the German Flute, Violin or Harpsichord’, were published for John Simpson of London, reprinted c1765, and re-engraved and published in one volume about 1785 by S., A. & P. Thompson of London under the title Forty-eight English, Irish and Scotch airs. Thumoth's only other known publication is Six Solos for a German Flute, Violin or Harpsichord, the First Three composed by Mr Burk Thumoth, the Three Last by Sigr. Canaby...


Angela Lepore

(b Modena, 2nd half of 17th century; d?Rome, after 1736). Italian violinist and composer. He worked for Cardinal Ottoboni from 1695 to 1737, and for Cardinal Pamphili from 1700 to 1710. In 1701 he was in the service of prince Urbano Barberini of Palestrina, and between 1708 and 1718 he received a fixed wage as a ‘cammeriere’ for Ruspoli. A member of the Congregazione di S Cecilia from 22 September 1707, he was guardiano degli strumentisti in 1708 and guardiano dei maestri di cappella in 1726. He participated in numerous musical performances in Rome; from 1708 to 1718 he took part in the celebrations for the design of the Accademia del Disegno di S Luca. A caricature of him by Pier Leone Ghezzi, dated 1 January 1720, reports: ‘Tibaldi the violin player, who in Arcangelo Corelli's time cut a fine figure, but is no longer called on to perform, because he plays in the old style’ (...


Anne Schnoebelen

(b Carpi, Aug 19, 1686; d Carpi, Dec 25, 1765). Italian cellist and composer. After early musical training under Nicolò Pace and Gaspare Griffoni, maestri di cappella of Carpi Cathedral, he moved to Bologna, where he continued his musical studies, including composition, the organ, cello, viola d’amore and singing. In 1706 he became a music teacher at the Collegio dei Nobili in Parma and virtuoso di camera for Duke Farnese. From Parma he went on several journeys, spending some time in the service of the King of Denmark. In 1723 he reappeared in Italy, where he collaborated on an opera at Reggio nell’Emilia (L’enigma disciolto), and in 1724 became organist and later maestro di cappella of the Accademia del Rosario in Finale Emilia. At the same time he pursued his career as a cellist, often playing in Venice. In 1730 he was named director of music at Carpi Cathedral, and in ...


Laurel Fay

revised by Elisabeth Cook

(b Paris, 1698/1708; d Paris, 1783). French violinist, composer and pamphleteer. He gave both 1698 and 1708 as his date of birth. The son of a dancing-teacher, he learnt the rudiments of the violin from his father and claimed also to have studied with Clérambault and Senaillé. He had to earn a living at an early age, though it is only known that at some time before 1735 he was employed as first violin and as maître de la musique of the King of Poland at the court of Lorraine at Lunéville. By 1739 he had joined the orchestra of the Paris Opéra.

Endowed with a contentious character and some literary talent, he made his mark on history primarily through his disputes with several illustrious figures in 18th-century France, including Voltaire, Rousseau and Mondonville. As a result of Travenol's reprinting, in 1746, of a libellous document by Baillet de Saint-Julien directed against Voltaire and occasioned by the latter's election to the Académie Française, Travenol and Voltaire became entangled in a lengthy legal dispute, further complicated by a case of mistaken identity, which resulted in the imprisonment of Travenol's 80-year-old father. In ...


Jeffrey Cooper

[first name unknown]

(fl c1728–51). Composer and violinist, possibly French. He is believed to have studied the violin under Tartini in Padua some time after 1728. His first published music appeared in 1736. His name is last mentioned in 1751 in a list of composers for whom the publisher Leclerc had renewed publishing rights. Tremais does not seem to have held any positions as a professional musician.

Seven collections of works (of which four survive) and one violin concerto by Tremais are listed in 18th-century catalogues, although the numbering system reaches op.10. Most of his violin music demands advanced technical ability: he made considerable use of multiple stops, extremely high notes, trills, tremolos, extended staccato passages and lengthy phrases to be played in a single bow; rapid alternation between plucked and bowed notes is a technical tour de force that he may have learnt from Tartini. He often used scordatura. Most of his solo sonatas have four movements, but those for two violins generally have three. The thematic material contains much figuration in the form of broken chords, chains of triplets and arpeggios, often supported by sustained harmonies; the harmonic progressions are occasionally unusual and often interesting....


(b Bologna; fl Bologna, 1695–1706). Italian composer and instrumentalist. He was the son of the painter and stage designer Giulio Troili, from whose Paradossi per praticare la prospettiva (Bologna, 1672) he and members of his family derived the surname by which they were often known. With great enthusiasm he briefly popularized the Sistro, or timpano musicale, a kind of glockenspiel, of which he was no doubt a virtuoso exponent. It was invented by G.B. Ariosti, of whose little instruction manual Modo facile di suonare il sistro nomato il timpano (Bologna, 1686) he brought out (using the name Paradossi) an enlarged and corrected second edition (Bologna, 1695, repr. 1933, 3/1702). The manual includes 44 dance tunes for the sistro in a special numerical notation, and Troili (now using this name) later published in normal notation a separate volume of dances for it, Balletti capricciosi, e diversi sul timpano musicale accompagnati dal basso...


E. Eugene Helm

revised by Peter Wollny

(b Insterburg, East Prussia, May 12, 1725; d Berlin, Dec 20, 1766). German composer and violinist. From the age of eight he was an apt student of the violin, and at 14, after his father had become a high court councillor in Berlin, he became a favoured soloist at the musical soirées of the minister von Happe. In Berlin he studied the violin with the Brunswick orchestra leader Simonetti, and keyboard and composition with Christoph Schaffrath. As an adult, inspired by the Berlin Opera, he became a good solo singer. In 1743 he entered the university in Frankfurt an der Oder as a student of law, and from 1746 until his death he carried on a distinguished legal career in Berlin.

Uhde was one of the most talented among the large and influential number of mid-18th-century German amateurs of music. Like such amateurs as the lawyer Krause and the poet Gerstenberg, he helped to develop a new attitude towards the lied as a form of poetical expression; unlike them, he showed considerable versatility as a composer. According to Hiller, several of Uhde's compositions were published anonymously in Berlin; this probably refers to anthologies such as the ...


Philippe Mercier

(b Rome, late 17th century; d Tournai, 1759). Italian composer and lutenist active in the south Netherlands. He was in Rome in 1720, and some time after that, probably at Rome or Naples, met Count François-Ernest of Salm-Reifferscheid, the future Bishop of Tournai, and in 1725 followed him to Tournai. He is said to have been a man of difficult character; he changed his employment several times, working for the Chevalier d’Orléans, grand prior of France (1730), then returning to the bishop’s service in 1733, moving to the Württemberg court in 1744, and finally settling in 1746 with the bishop; he also had opportunities to perform in Brussels, notably at the court. The bishop guaranteed him an annual income of 1200 livres as well as food, lodging, fuel, light and ten Spanish pistoles for clothing. In 1759 his widow, disregarding her husband’s periods of work elsewhere, claimed food and lodging for herself on the strength of the 34 years during which he had been in the bishop’s service. Fétis confused Ursillo with the Neapolitan composer Fabio....


Karl Kroeger

(b Leicester, bap. June 7, 1730; d Leicester, Sept 10, 1791). English composer, violinist and music teacher, a great-nephew of Robert Valentine. He was the most important musician in Leicestershire during the second half of the 18th century, teaching and performing throughout the county and beyond. He taught a wide range of string and wind instruments, including the violin, the cello, the harpsichord, the guitar, the flute, the oboe, the trumpet and the French horn. He performed on the violin (and later on the cello) in subscription and benefit concerts in Leicester and many of the surrounding county market-towns. He also owned a music shop in Leicester, where he both taught and sold a wide variety of instruments and music.

He composed music mostly for the use of his students, to assist them in gaining experience in ensemble playing. His orchestral works have been described as ‘of popular and easy character’, reflecting ‘the kind of music played at meetings of provincial musical societies, several of which subscribed to their publications’ (...


Martin Medforth

[Valentini, Roberto; Valentino, Roberto]

(bap. Leicester, Jan 16, 1674; d 1735–40). English composer, flautist and oboist. He was resident in Rome and Naples for virtually all his professional life. The son of Thomas Follentine, an itinerant musician who had arrived and settled in Leicester about 1670, he was unable to secure a position as a town wait and so moved to Rome during the later years of the 17th century. By 1707 he was well established as a performer there, on both the flute (recorder) and the oboe, and is known to have performed during the period 1708–10 at the Ruspoli palace at events organized by Caldara, Corelli and Handel. His integration into musical circles in Rome is attested by the competent writing in his op.1 trio sonatas, which date from this period. Though showing evidence of an English training, specifically in respect of localized tonality, the overall style demonstrates a clear understanding of what Manfred Bukofzer referred to as a developed ‘bel canto’ style....


Enrico Careri

(b Florence, Dec 14, 1681; d Rome, Nov 1753). Italian composer and violinist. It is not known precisely when he settled in Rome, but in 1692, at the age of 11, he was a member of the Congregazione di S Cecilia, membership of which was essential to practise as a musician in that city. From a sonnet published in his Rime (1708), we learn the name of his teacher, Giovanni Bononcini, with whom he studied in Rome between 1692 and 1697. The first indication of Valentini's activity as a violinist is in 1694, but only from 1708 does his name – often his nickname, Straccioncino (‘Little Ragamuffin’) – begin to appear with any regularity in the lists of performers at churches and colleges, or in the lists of musicians playing in performances patronized by Prince Ruspoli and Cardinals Ottoboni and Pamphili.

Between 1701 and 1714 Valentini published seven collections of instrumental compositions (opp.1–8; op.6 was never published) and he also composed several oratorios and cantatas. In spite of the intention, expressed in the preface to op.8, to issue six further collections and a ‘poemetto in ottava rima’, none of his works was published in Italy after ...


Sven Hansell and Maria Nevilla Massaro

(b Bologna, c1690; d Bologna, 1778). Italian cellist and composer. Documents of 1721 at the basilica of S Antonio, Padua, indicating his appointment as first cellist, disclose that he had served as cellist at S Maria Maggiore, Bergamo. He was also at the Ospedale della Pietà in Venice as maestro di violoncello from 27 September 1720 until before 4 April 1721, when his salary ceased, indicating a tenure of only a few months, but Vivaldi may have composed concertos for him, as Giazotto conjectures. On 1 November 1721 Vandini began playing in the Paduan basilica orchestra, having been appointed on 9 June. His approximately 50 years of service there were interrupted on 18 June 1722, when he resigned in order to go to Prague. Here he participated in the musical celebrations for the coronation of Karl VI in June 1723; he was joined there by Tartini and together they remained in the service of Count Ferdinand Francesco Kinsky until spring ...


Craig H. Russell

(fl c1770). Spanish theorist and guitarist . He is known primarily for his guitar treatise, one of the earliest for the six-course instrument, which circulated in manuscript under various titles; copies in the Archivo General de la Nación, Mexico City, and the Newberry Library, Chicago, bear the title E[x]plicación para tocar la guitarra de punteado por mussica, o cifra y reglas utiles para acompañar con ella la parte de el baxo. Vargas drew on Santiago de Murcia’s Resumen de acompañar la parte con la guitarra (Madrid, 1717) and Joseph de Torres y Martińez Bravo’s Reglas generales de acompañar (Madrid, 1702, 2/1736) for the sections on music theory and accompaniment. The treatise deals extensively with most aspects of guitar playing: stringing and tuning the instrument, scordatura tunings, metres, scales, clefs, accidentals, ornaments, left- and right-hand technique, arpeggios, staff notation and tablature. Music examples are numerous and include Spanish, French, Italian and English dances, as well as ...


(b Saizenay, nr Salins, Jura, Sept 26, 1668; d Besançon, July 21, 1742). French amateur lutenist and theorbo player. He compiled two sizeable anthologies ( F-B ; facs. (Geneva, 1980), see Chauvel; ed. in Burchmore), which are among the most important lute and theorbo sources of the late French Baroque. He was in Paris towards the end of the century (the larger anthology is inscribed ‘Parisÿs. 1699’), presumably studying law, concurrently studying the lute with Guillaume Jacquesson and, some time later, lute and theorbo with Robert de Visée. By 1704 he was living in Besançon, after he was nominated counsellor to the parliament. His tablatures span the entire history of the French Baroque lute. The most famous lute pieces of the earlier 17th-century repertory (e.g. La belle homicide by Denis Gaultier) are mixed with the works of later composers such as Jacques Gallot, whose Pièces de luth...


Michael Talbot

(b ?Brussels, c1675; d Hanover, April 18, 1745). German composer and violinist of uncertain extraction, possibly Walloon. Despite the modish Italian form of his name he seems to have originated from France or the Low Countries: the record of his marriage in Hanover to Anna Maria Ennuy, a resident of that city, on 13 January 1697 describes him as ‘gallus’. Baptismal records of their children go further, adding ‘Bruxellensis’ to the father's name. It is also significant that documents from the Hanoverian court, to which he was attached from Easter 1698 or earlier, until his death, always list him with the French musicians. The court orchestra was directed by J.-B. Farinel (alias G.B. Farinelli), a native of Grenoble, and performed a repertory entirely in the French style, whereas it was left to the chamber musicians to cultivate Italian music. Having sometimes deputized for Farinel (whose pupil he was, according to Walther), Venturini became official Konzertmeister in ...


John Walter Hill

(b Florence, Jan 17, 1659; d Florence, Oct 26, 1733). Italian violinist and composer, uncle of Francesco Maria Veracini. He presumably had his early training from his father Francesco di Niccolò, a noted violinist with whom Antonio frequently performed in his youth. For example, they played regularly at the opera performances produced for Grand Prince Ferdinando de' Medici at Pratolino, 1677–85. Veracini entered the service of Grand Duchess Vittoria of Tuscany on 3 March 1682. After her death in 1694 he received a pension of half pay. At the death of Pietro Sammartini in 1700, he became maestro di cappella at S Michele Berteldi (now S Gaetano) in Florence, and he provided music to other churches of the city on at least an occasional basis. Veracini was an important freelance musical director, providing oratorios for the company of S Marco (1703–5), S Jacopo del Nicchio (...


John Walter Hill

(b Florence, Feb 1, 1690; d Florence, Oct 31, 1768). Italian composer and violinist. Veracini was born into a family of musicians and artists. His grandfather was one of the first violinists of Florence; his uncle Antonio Veracini was that and a fine composer as well. Francesco Maria’s father Agostino was, ironically, one of the few Veracinis who did not play the violin even as an amateur; he was a druggist and undertaker. Veracini’s early training was provided by his uncle Antonio with whom the promising boy often performed in public. His other instructors in Florence were G.M. Casini and his assistant Francesco Feroci. In particular, Casini, the organist at Florence Cathedral and composer of church music in a highly individual, neo-Palestrinian style, left his mark upon Veracini’s subsequent works. His last teacher was apparently G.A. Bernabei, with whom he may have studied in 1715 when he was in southern Germany. There is no solid evidence that he studied with Corelli, as is sometimes asserted....


Julie Anne Sadie

[Alarius ]

(b Ghent; d Ghent, 1734). Flemish cellist, viol player and composer . His name appears in Parisian sources from 1709, when he was listed with Forqueray, Anet and others as a musician in the service of the exiled Elector of Bavaria (who had been in the Low Countries). He was later an ordinaire de musique de la chambre du roy; Couperin mentioned him as a participant in performances of the Concerts royaux in the Versailles Sunday concerts, 1714–15. His name appears in court records from 1717: he received payments (some of them unusually large) for performances, and permission to travel to Flanders (1720, 1731 and on his retirement in 1733) and to Lyons (1722, in the service of the Marshal of Villeroy). He often played in concerts at Marly and Versailles, where he lived, at least from 1725. He provided the instrumental music for Matho’s ballet, ...