81-100 of 165 results  for:

  • Late 18th c./Classical (1750-1800) x
Clear all

Article

Franco Piperno

(b Bologna, fl 1740–52). Italian soprano . She first appeared at Alessandria in 1740 (in Buini’s Il savio delirante) with established buffo singers including Anna Maria Querzoli and in the same year began to collaborate with Domenico Cricchi in performing comic intermezzos (e.g. Pergolesi’s La serva padrona and Amor fa l’uomo cieco). After singing in Latilla’s La finta cameriera in Venice and Livorno in Francesco Baglioni’s company, she joined that of Pietro Mingotti (1743–5) and sang in Hamburg, Leipzig and Prague. In autumn 1745 she was again in Italy performing intermezzos with Cricchi and also comic operas, including Giuseppe Scarlatti’s Il giocatore. Müller’s reference to her presence in Copenhagen in 1748 is due to a misinterpretation of programmes printed in Copenhagen in that year.

E. H. Müller: Angelo und Pietro Mingotti (Dresden, 1917) F. Piperno: ‘Gli interpreti buffi di Pergolesi’, Studi pergolesiani, 1 (1986), 166–78...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Verona, 1785; d Salò, Dec 31, 1832). Italian contralto. She made her début in 1806 at Verona, then sang in Turin and at the Teatro Valle, Rome, in the first performance of Manfroce’s Alzira (1810). She repeated Alzira in Monza (1811), sang in Florence (...

Article

Sidney Jackson Jowers

( fl 1748–57). French costume designer . Few facts are known about him: he was the immediate successor of François Boucher at the Paris Opéra from July 1748 until 1757 or 1758, and his initial wage of 1200 livres was doubled in 1750. He designed costumes for opéras-ballets by Rameau and revivals of Lully and Charpentier. The Mercure reported, in July 1763, the appearance of Martin’s Collection de figures theatrales (20 coloured engravings), ‘six years after he retired’. They portray Driade, Indienne, Incas, Hercule, Flore, Paysan, Paysanne, Suivante de Flore, Suivante de Zéphire, Zéphire, Africain, Apollon, Démon, Faune, Furie, Médée, Neptune, Paysan galant, Paysanne galante and Thétis. The last ten were reworked to conform to the fashion 16 years later and, with six new designs (Chinois, Chinoise, Silphide, Silphe, Reine des sylphes, Vénus), were printed in Gallerie des modes et costumes français, dessinés d’après nature (1779). Martin’s work inspired many later designers; C. W. Beaumont considered him ‘Berain’s only peer’....

Article

Marita P. McClymonds

( fl 1764–95). Italian librettist . He first appears as the author of the successful dramma giocoso Li rivali placati, set by P. A. Guglielmi for Venice in 1764. Three similar works followed in quick succession, drawing him to the attention of Duke Carl Eugen, who engaged him in 1766 to produce comic opera for his new theatre at Ludwigsburg (near Stuttgart). There Martinelli wrote five works for Jommelli, who had not composed comic opera for over ten years. In 1768 Jommelli arranged to work for the Portuguese court theatre in absentia, sending Martinelli as his representative. During his early years in Lisbon Martinelli directed Jommelli revivals, including the French-inspired Fetonte. He also provided Jommelli with a reworked version of Metastasio’s Ezio and a new semi-serious magic opera, Le avventure di Cleomede, both produced in Lisbon in 1772. For Perez, the Portuguese mestre da capela real, he wrote the French-inspired ...

Article

Marita P. McClymonds

(b Florence, c 1730; d after 1776). Italian composer . His first known opera, Il gran conte di Cordanova, was performed in Rome in Carnival 1754. Six years later he was invited to compose an opera seria, Muzio Scevola, for Florence. The libretto for his La scuffiara (1765) identifies him as maestro di cappella napolitano, though he is maestro di cappella fiorentino in that for I tre amanti burlati (1766). By 1774, according to the librettos of his last two operas, he had become maestro di cappella romano. He was probably related to, or even possibly the same person as, Girolamo Masi, a maestro di cappella romano at S Giacomo de’ Spagnoli, who set the farsa Lo sposalizio per puntiglio (1768, Rome, Valle). Manuscript copies of this, as well as of the intermezzo Il governo dell’isola passa (1765, Rome), survive ( I-Baf ); though attributed to ‘Pater Felice Masi’ they are apparently works of Girolamo (or Giovanni) Masi....

Article

Dennis Libby

(b ?Rome; fl 1743–78). Italian soprano . She began in comic opera at Naples in 1743–4 and Palermo in 1745–6, becoming a pupil of the composer Perez. In 1748 she was in service at Bayreuth and in 1749–50 she was seconda donna in opera seria at Vienna, where she made an impression on Metastasio, who praised her eyes, figure and voice (range approximately b ♭ to b ♭″), although he considered both her voice and stature too small for a prima donna. However, she sang as prima donna in Italy from 1751 and during the period 1757–62 in London, at the King’s Theatre, where, with her husband Trombetta, she was also manager, 1757–63; it was she who engaged J. C. Bach in 1762 to write for the theatre. She was not seconda donna there in 1754–6, as Burney averred; this was probably Camilla Mattei, possibly a relative. She then retired and in ...

Article

Dale E. Monson

(b Calabria, 1742; d Naples, 1795). Italian librettist and writer on music . A Neapolitan lawyer, he published works of poetry, biography, jurisprudence and religion; his biography of Jommelli is one of the most important contemporary descriptions of the composer, who, during his last years, was an intimate friend of Mattei’s. Mattei also greatly enlarged the library of the Naples conservatory. His writings on dramatic poetry and opera continue the calls for reform voiced throughout the 18th century by such literati as Muratori (1706), Algarotti (1755) and Arteaga (1783), although Mattei was an ardent admirer of Metastasio’s drammi. He wrote a single serenata libretto, Il natal d’Apollo, set to music by Pasquale Cafaro for Naples in 1775.

Saggio di poesie latine, ed italiane (Naples, 1774); repr. as ‘Elogio del Jommelli o sia il progresso della poesia, e musica teatrale’, Memorie per servire alla vita di Metastasio...

Article

Christopher Smith

[Duveyrier, Anne-Honoré-Joseph]

(b Paris, Dec 13, 1787; d Marly, Nov 7, 1865). French dramatist and librettist. He initially embarked on a career in law, entering the magistrature after only two years’ practice as an advocate. He resigned his position in 1815 to devote himself to writing for the Paris stage, having already enjoyed some success at the Théâtre de l’Impératrice with his one-act comedy L’oncle rival in 1811. Like many of the French dramatists of the day he adopted a pseudonym, although it is doubtful whether many would have been unaware of the true identity of ‘Mélesville’. Over a period of no less than half a century he wrote some three hundred plays of every description: comedies, comédies-vaudevilles, mélodrames (generally described as being à grand spectacle), mélodrames comiques, historical romances and others. They were all forms of popular dramatic entertainment with music that gave Parisian audiences an evening’s undemanding, ephemeral entertainment. He was always willing to work with various collaborators, among whom by far the most prominent was Eugène Scribe. Scribe was also the most distinguished of the librettists with whom Mélesville was associated when he turned to devising opera and ...

Article

(b Bologna, 1720; d 1781). Italian soprano . Her first appearance was in Faenza in 1741 in Latilla’s La finta cameriera, with a company directed by the famous Roman buffo Francesco Baglioni. In 1742 she sang opera seria roles in Bologna (Cleartes in Caroli’s Andromaca) but from 1743 she returned to opera buffa in Baglioni’s company and shared in the success of Neapolitan, Roman and Florentine commedie per musica in Venice and other northern Italian cities. In Latilla’s La finta cameriera, for example, she sang the roles of Betta and Gioconda in Vicenza, Venice, Bologna, Alessandria, Turin and Mantua between 1741 and 1747. In 1748 she married the composer Scalabrini, with whom she joined Pietro Gaggiotti’s company and toured in northern Europe. She performed comic intermezzos in Hamburg and Copenhagen until 1758, and from 1749 was a virtuosa to the King of Denmark.

E. H. Müller: Angelo und Pietro Mingotti...

Article

Carole Taylor

[Sackville, Charles; later 2nd Duke of Dorset]

(b London, Feb 6, 1711; d London, Jan 6, 1769). English impresario . He made his first European ‘grand tour’, 1731–3, and undertook a second continental visit, 1737–8. He is best known as the extravagant young aristocrat who took up the direction of Italian opera at the King’s Theatre in 1739 just when Handel dropped the form altogether. Under his direction, Galuppi, Lampugnani and the soprano castrato Angelo Maria Monticelli were invited to appear in London from 1739 to 1745. Londoners also heard Pergolesi’s music on the stage for the first time in 1741–2 (L’Olimpiade), and Lord Middlesex undoubtedly had a hand in bringing Gluck over in 1745–6. Middlesex engaged a complete buffo company from Italy for the coming seasons, before withdrawing from direct involvement in the opera management in autumn 1748. Francesco Vanneschi, Middlesex’s chief poet and assistant manager, ultimately took over as impresario in 1753...

Article

(b Milan, c 1718; d Dresden, Vienna or Milan, after 1787). Italian librettist . His academic name was ‘Filodosso’. Nothing is known of his life before his appointment as imperial secretary to the vicariate in Vienna some time before the mid-1740s. Presumably, he became amanuensis to the court poet Pietro Metastasio at about the same time. The fullest sources of information on Migliavacca are a dozen letters written by Metastasio to him between 1750 and 1771, and as many more to Farinelli and others from the late 1740s to the 1760s. Metastasio recommended Migliavacca to the Dresden court, where the latter was court poet from 1752 until perhaps the mid-1780s, and wrote to Migliavacca generally with respect and kindness, although several of his letters to Farinelli and others are critical of Migliavacca’s talent and person.

Metastasio seems to have had mixed feelings for his assistant, and many of his compliments hide veiled insults. He described Migliavacca as able to write ‘an attractive ...

Article

Patricia Lewy Gidwitz

( fl Naples, 1755–82). Italian librettist . He worked exclusively at the Teatro dei Fiorentini and the Teatro Nuovo in Naples.

commedie per musica unless otherwise stated

L’amore alla moda (with A. Palomba), Sellitto, 1755; La francese brillante, P. A. Guglielmi, 1763 (Paisiello, 1764); La vedova di bel genio, Paisiello, 1766; Le ’mbroglie de la Bajasse (commedia musicale), Paisiello, 1767 (Paisiello, 1769, as La serva fatta padrona); La finta semplice, o sia Il tutore burlato, Insanguine, 1769; L’arabo cortese, Paisiello, 1769; I sposi perseguitati, N. Piccinni, 1769; La somiglianza de’ nomi, Paisiello, 1771 Le stravaganze del conte, Cimarosa, 1772, Il vagabondo fortunato, Piccinni, 1773; I viaggiatori, Piccinni, 1775 (Valentino Fioravanti, 1796, as I viaggiatori amanti); I matrimoni in ballo (farsetta per musica), Cimarosa, 1776; La frascatana nobile, Cimarosa, 1776; I sposi incogniti, Latilla, 1779; I commedianti fortunati, A. Amicone, 1779; Il rè alla caccia, Tarchi, 1780; Il trionfo de’ pupilli oppressi...

Article

Dennis Libby

[‘Manzoletto’ ]

(bc 1740; d after 1796). Italian contralto castrato . His nickname ‘Manzoletto’ came from the castrato Manzuoli, who was perhaps his teacher and guided the beginnings of his operatic career, which ran from the mid-1750s to the mid-1790s. He was one of the most respected secondi uomi in opera seria...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

(b Fermo, March 5, 1782; d S Benedetto del Tronto, Adria, Sept 14, 1859). Italian tenor. He studied in Fermo, making his début in 1808. He took part in two Rossini premières: as Duke Bertrando in L’inganno felice and as Dorvil in La scala di seta, both in ...

Article

Dennis Libby

revised by Dorothea Link

(b ?Bologna or Reggio Emilia, c 1750–55; d Trieste, Oct 30, 1800). Italian soprano . She is sometimes confused with Anna Boselli, a singer of secondary roles, active mainly in Parma in 1757–73. She made her opera buffa début at Bologna in autumn 1773, sang in Spain during the period 1774–7 and in Russia in 1779–80. She was by then a star, noted for graceful acting and a beautiful voice. In 1783 she made a successful transition to opera seria, singing as prima donna in many leading houses, although not quite so admired in this genre. She spent the 1787–8 season in Vienna, where her creations included Diana in Martín y Soler’s L’arbore di Diana (a role later taken over by Ferrarese). Between 1788 and 1791 she appeared in both comic and serious parts, thereafter almost exclusively in opera buffa. She was in Paris from 1790 to 1792, Spain in ...

Article

(b Roccacontrada [now Arcevia], nr Iesi, bap. Jan 31, 1710; d ?London, after 1772). Italian soprano castrato. After a modest beginning in his native Marche region and in Rome, in female roles, in 1730 Morigi arrived in Bologna, where he became a member of the Accademia Filarmonica, also receiving the patronage of Count Sicinio Pepoli. Between 1730 and 1734 he took minor roles in various operas by Albinoni, Hasse and Vivaldi in Venice, Verona, Bologna, Florence and Genoa. During the period 1731–5 he was in the service of Philipp of Hessen-Darmstadt, the Imperial Governor of Mantua. In 1733 he was engaged by Empress Anna, though he did not arrive in St Petersburg until summer 1735. He enjoyed remarkable success in operas by Araia and Hasse; castratos were previously almost unheard of in Russia. He returned to Italy at the beginning of 1744, and from 1746 to 1753 he sang in several theatres in northern Italy (occasionally as primo uomo during the period ...

Article

Olive Baldwin and Thelma Wilson

[Rosoman]

(b London, c1768; d Hammersmith, July 3, 1841). English soprano and actress. She sang in a children’s company trained by Charles Dibdin and then worked in the provinces before her Covent Garden début in 1786. She was a sweet singer and a handsome woman who was shown to advantage in ‘vocal parts of a genteel and sentimental nature’ (Oxberry). She married the violinist John Mountain in 1787 and they often worked together. From 1798 to 1800 she studied with Rauzzini while working in Bath and Bristol. On her return to London the Monthly Mirror described her as ‘clearly the best singer now upon the boards’. When Nancy Storace retired in 1808 Mountain took over her roles; she herself left the stage in 1815.

BDA DNB (L. M. Middleton) LS ‘Mrs Mountain’, Thespian Magazine, 1 (1792), 139 C. H. Wilson: The Myrtle and Vine (London, 1802)...

Article

Robert Lamar Weaver

(b Pisa, c 1755; d ?Florence, after 1797). Italian soprano castrato . His first roles were Theagenes in Jommelli’s Achille in Sciro and Fausta in Anfossi’s Quinto Fabio at the Teatro delle Dame in Rome during the 1771 Carnival. When the Florentine impresario Giuseppe Compstoff took over at the Dame in 1772, Neri so impressed him that he took him back to Florence to sing in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice at the Cocomero. Neri sang at the Pergola during the 1772 carnival in Mortellari’s Didone abbandonata and returned the following year. At this time he also studied in Florence, with Giovanni Manzuoli (Neri is sometimes called ‘il Manzuolino’), developing a ‘voice of silver’, according to a contemporary Florentine critic. He regularly sang in Lenten concerts in Florence (1772–96) and often in unstaged operas, such as Traetta’s Ifigenia in Tauride (Teatro di Porta Rossa, 1773).

Over the next decade and a half Neri’s reputation spread throughout Italy. In ...

Article

Olive Baldwin and Thelma Wilson

(d Kensington, London, bur. Aug 28, 1784). English soprano, actress and dancer. The daughter of a Jewish merchant (or tavern keeper) she made her début as Polly in The Beggar’s Opera at the newly opened Covent Garden Theatre in December 1732, with a run of 20 nights in succession. She played Deidamia in Gay’s posthumous ...

Article

(b Venice; fl 1717–62). Italian tenor. His career centred on Venice, where he appeared in 21 operas between 1717 and 1749. He also sang in Rome (1720, 1729), Turin (1720–22, 1739–40), Bergamo (c1726) and Florence (1728). In 1743 he sang Mathusius in Gluck’s Demofoonte in Milan, Bologna and Reggio Emilia. He was a ‘virtuoso’ of the Duke of Massa and Carrara in about 1726, of Princess Henrietta of Hesse-Darmstadt (a native of Modena) in 1749 and of Duke Philip of Parma in 1762; that year he also sang in two farsette at Florence. Most of his Venetian appearances were in the less important theatres, especially the tiny S Moisè. He was occasionally primo uomo, but specialized in buffo parts after 1747.

S. Mamy: ‘La diaspora dei cantanti veneziani nella prima metà del settecento’, Nuovi studi vivaldiani: edizione e cronologia critica delle opere...