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Article

Robin Bowman

revised by Peter Allsop

(b Brescia, c 1660; d Brescia, 1718). Italian composer, violinist and violin teacher, probably brother of Luigi Taglietti. He taught at the Jesuit Collegio dei Nobili, Brescia, from at least 1702. His music was popular in the first decades of the 18th century and was published in Italy at a time when the printing of instrumental music there was becoming comparatively rare. The Amsterdam publisher Pierre Mortier, in a 1709 list of his publications, placed him and Luigi Taglietti second only to Corelli, and they were indeed important in the development of the concerto and sonata. His concertos have more in common with the concerto grosso than with the solo type, though his op.8 features four solo violins, antedating by a few years the publication of Vivaldi's op.3, which contains some concertos for the same scoring. Occasional solo passages, including some for the viola, do, however, occur. He was among the first composers regularly to limit his concertos to three or four movements only. He shows a marked preference for only one solo treble line in his non-concerto works, witness his numerous instrumental arias (opp.3, 6 and 10) and the powerful melodic lines of his op.13 sonatas. His scorings for violoncello and violone, either together or as alternatives, have been cited as evidence of the co-existence of independent instruments....

Article

Robin Bowman

revised by Peter Allsop

(b 1668; d ?Brescia, 1715). Italian composer, trumpet marine player and teacher, probably brother of Giulio Taglietti. He was associated with the Jesuit Collegio dei Nobili, Brescia, from at least 1697; in 1702 he was recorded as maestro di tromba marina there. Like that of Giulio Taglietti, his music was popular in the early 18th century and was published in Italy at a time when the printing of instrumental music was becoming comparatively rare. The Amsterdam publisher Pierre Mortier, in a list of his publications dated 1709, placed the two composers second only to Corelli, and they were indeed important in the development of the concerto and sonata. Like Giulio's, his concertos have more in common with the concerto grosso than with the solo type, and he too was among the first composers to write concertos with only three or four movements. Some of his movements show a remarkably clearcut and enterprising ritornello structure....

Article

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....

Article

Malcolm Boyd

revised by John Rosselli

(b Cesena, Aug 13, 1654; d Faenza, on or just after July 16, 1732). Italian castrato, teacher, composer and writer. He was the author of a highly influential treatise on singing: Opinioni de’ cantori antichi e moderni (1723). He was not the son of the Bologna composer G.F. Tosi. He sang in a Rome church, 1676–7, belonged to Milan Cathedral choir from 1681 until his dismissal for misconduct in 1685, made his one recorded appearance in opera at Reggio nell’Emilia in 1687, in Giovanni Varischino’s Odoacre, and was based in Genoa before going in 1693 to London, where he gave weekly public concerts and taught. From 1701 to 1723 he travelled extensively as musical and diplomatic agent of Emperor Joseph I and the Elector Palatine. From 1724 he again taught in London for some years; sometime before 1681 he had become a priest. A number of cantatas and arias are among his works....

Article

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’ (...

Article

Joseph Vella Bondin

[Michaele Angelo]

(b Senglea, Malta, Nov 7, 1710; d Cospicua, Malta, Dec 25, 1792). Maltese composer and teacher. From boyhood, he was intended for the Catholic priesthood. On 14 July 1730 he left Malta for Naples to study at the Conservatorio Pietà dei Turchini with the primo maestro Nicola Fago, the secondo maestro Andrea Basso, and after 1734 also with Leonardo Leo. He returned to Malta in early 1738, where he undertook the duties of a priest and established himself as a maestro di musica. The first truly influential Maltese teacher, he reformed music education, fighting indifference and technical incompetence, and bringing it into line with developments in Naples. His students included Salvatore Magrin, Giuseppe Burlon, Antonio Freri, Francesco Azopardi and Nicolò Isouard. As an organist and maestro di cappella he accepted numerous temporary commissions in the most important Maltese churches before obtaining permanent employment in 1762 at the parish church of Cospicua. His extant works reveal contrapuntal craftsmanship, and his concern with the place of plainchant in an era of rapid musical innovation is evident in his sacred works. In the introit ...

Article

Michael F. Robinson

revised by Hanns-Bertold Dietz

(b Bisceglie, Bari, 1665; d Naples, July 15, 1716). Italian composer and teacher. At the age of ten he entered the Neapolitan conservatory S Maria di Loreto, where he studied till 1676. His chief music teacher there was the distinguished Neapolitan composer Francesco Provenzale. While a senior student Veneziano sometimes acted as his teacher's music copyist, as is proved by a manuscript score of Provenzale's opera Il schiavo di sua moglie ( I-Rsc ), inscribed: ‘Francesco Provenzale fecit Anno Dmni 1671. Gaetano Venetiano allievo di S.M.d.L. di Napoli scrivea 1675’.

During his adult career he held, at one time or another, the important positions of maestro di cappella at the Neapolitan court, the Neapolitan church of Carmine Maggiore, and his old conservatory, S Maria di Loreto. His connections with the Spanish-controlled court began in 1678 when he was made supernumerary organist of the court chapel. In November 1686...

Article

David Tunley

[de ]

(b Paris, 1683; d Strasbourg, May 28, 1760). French teacher and composer . He worked at Lyons from 1703 as a music teacher, and it seems likely that when the Académie des Beaux-Arts was founded there in 1713 Villesavoye was associated with it. He may have become maître de musique for the academy in 1718, on the resignation of N.-A. Bergiron de Briou from that post; he was certainly appointed director of its concerts in 1726. In their early years these were given only by academicians, taught and rehearsed by the maître de musique, but this amateur music-making gradually gave way to more professional performances. Among the few professional singers at the academy during Villesavoye's time was his second wife, Suzanne Palais, whom he married in 1707. About 1731 he left Lyons for Strasbourg where he became maître de musique at the cathedral. While holding that appointment he directed the festival music for a visit of Louis XV to Strasbourg on ...

Article

Cecil Adkins

(b c1656; d between Dec 1727 and July 1729). English musical amateur . A teacher at Tenison's School, St Martin-in-the-Fields, he espoused a two-string monochord in his The Tonometer: Explaining and Demonstrating, by an Easie Method, in Numbers and Proportion, all the 32 Distinct and Different Notes, Adjuncts or Supplements Contained in Each of Four Octaves Inclusive, of the Gamut, or Common Scale of Music (London, 1725). He claimed to have invented it, referring to Michael Wise as an early mentor, in order to help performers, practitioners and instrument makers understand what they do by ear.

The set of string lengths given by Warren divides the octave into 32 parts and is based on 1000 units of measurement. In commenting on the practicality of the instrument he said: ‘This is of use as well as for speculation, since hereby a scholar may be seasonably caution’d and inform’d … before he can be able either to perform or speak tolerably like a master … especially if vocal music, or the violin, are his profession or choice’. Warren’s system was discussed by J.A. Scheibe in his ...

Article

Joshua Rifkin

revised by Konrad Küster

(b Leipzig, bap. June 30, 1695; d Frankfurt an der Oder, May 1, 1760). German poet and cantata librettist . The daughter of a prominent Leipzig family, she began to pursue a professional literary career in her late twenties after she had been widowed twice and lost the children of both marriages. Johann Christoph Gottsched became her mentor and principal sponsor. She published her first collection of verse, Versuch in gebundener Schreib-Art, in 1728; a second volume followed a year later. In 1731 she brought out a collection of letters and became a member of the Deutsche Gesellschaft in Leipzig, whose prize for poetry she won in 1732 and 1734. In 1733, at Gottsched’s recommendation, the Faculty of Philosophy of Wittenberg University elected her imperial poet laureate. Ziegler’s last publication, Vermischte Schriften in gebundener und ungebundener Rede – probably a revised version of a lost collection announced in the Leipzig fair catalogue of ...