(b Seville, c1700; d Madrid, 1776). Spanish composer and guitarist. He was a member of one of Spain's most remarkable theatrical families; his brother Vincente was a musician, his brother Manuel an actor and author. Antonio was married three times, each time to women connected with the stage. By 1733 he was a guitarist and musician in Madrid theatrical companies. He was important in the early development of the Spanish musical theatre: a document of 1787 says that before 1749 Guerrero, José Nebra and others began to make additions to the witty verses sung during the second intermission of a comedy, called a baile de bajo because the voices were accompanied by a guitar and viol. The Comedia del arca de Noe contains a baile prefaced ‘Voz y Baxo con violines, trompas, para el bayle intitulado La huerta de Casani … Del sigr Antonio Guerrero. 1752’, one of the earliest pieces with all the characteristics of a ...
revised by Guido Olivieri
(b ?Genoa, c1675; d after 1728). Italian violinist and composer active mostly in France. His biography is complicated by his use of both Guido and Antonio as surnames: the privilèges générals of 1707 and 1726 refer to him as ‘Gio. Antonio Guido’, while the compositions they cite are published as by ‘Mr Antonio’. Most 18th-century sources refer to him simply as ‘Antonio’. Coming probably from Genoa, he arrived at Naples and in December 1683 entered the Conservatorio della Pietà dei Turchini, where he studied the violin under Nicola Vinciprova. Five years later his brother Giuseppe was an alto there, but of him we know no more. In 1691 Giovanni Antonio was still in touch with the Conservatorio as a copyist, but during the following years he was employed as a musician of the Royal Chapel. His name was regularly inserted in the list of payments for this institution from ...
[Ghignone, Giovanni Pietro]
(b Turin, Feb 10, 1702; d Versailles, Jan 30, 1774). Italian violinist and composer, active in France. The son of a Turin merchant, he was among many renowned violinist-composers trained by G.B. Somis. He made his début in Paris in April and May 1725 in three appearances at the newly founded Concert Spirituel, where he and Jean-Baptiste Anet were presented together in a competition between French and Italian music. During the next 25 years Guignon appeared frequently at these concerts, the brilliance of his performances always being applauded. In October 1727, with the viol player Forqueray, he played in Rennes with great success. Three years later he became one of the musicians of the Prince of Carignan, an affiliation that continued for at least two decades. That same year he played his own concerto and sonatas for the French king and queen, to their great satisfaction. This led to his appointment at the end of ...
Gerald R. Castonguay
(b Nov 15, 1705; d Chaville, nr Paris, Oct 1, 1770). French composer and violinist. He was brought up by the Count of Rochechouart in Paris, where he began his violin studies. He later studied in Italy with the violinist G.B. Somis. By 1729, Guillemain was active in Lyons and soon after then he was appointed first violinist of the Dijon Académie de Musique, where he became well established as composer and performer. The Président à Mortier of the Dijon parliament sent Guillemain to Italy at great expense and included him in his will.
In 1737 Guillemain became a musicien ordinaire to Louis XV and eventually one of the most popular and highest-paid court musicians. It was probably to give concerts that he went to Italy with the violinist Jean-Pierre Guignon in the late 1730s. Guillemain performed in private concerts before the king and queen and from 1747 to 1750...
revised by David Lasocki
(fl Paris, 1746–57). French composer and flautist. The earliest surviving document referring to him is his privilege of 31 March 1746 to publish ‘sonatas, trios, concertos and other pieces of instrumental music of his composition’. In the same year he published Sei sonate en quatuor, dedicated to his pupil and patron the Count of Rothenburg, a Prussian lieutenant-general. La Laurencie and Saint-Foix included these galant sonatas among the precursors of the French symphony and compared them in importance to the Sonates en quatuors (1743) of Louis-Gabriel Guillemain, although they lack the latter's lyricism and interaction among the voices; Bowers saw them also as precursors of the more homophonic Classical quartet for flute and string trio. The works in Guillemant's favourite medium of two melody instruments without bass, ranging from the easy Deux petites suites to the more challenging duo sonatas and suittes d'airs, introduced new, galant...
( b Bad Windsheim, nr Nuremberg, bap. Jan 24, 1610; d Strasbourg, Oct 13, 1697). German lutenist and composer . He studied in Basle in 1638, and on 16 July 1643 married Anna Wolffhart in Strasbourg, where he occupied high office in the Corporation des Tanneurs and then intermittently (between 1654 and 1688) in the Conseil des XXI, charged with the internal affairs of the city. In 1652 Georg Gumpelzhaimer cited him in his Gymnasma (Strasbourg, 1621) as one of the most famous lutenists of his time, a judgment echoed in 1690 by René Milleran ( F-Pn Res.823). Gumprecht appears today as a major disseminator of the French lute style in Germany. His works are found in German as much as in French sources, and in arrangements for various instruments. Both clear and expressive, they owe much to the influence of Mercure, Dufaut and Pinel, but they also display some originality in their frequent interrupted cadences (then rarely used) and in a certain taste for dissonance. They show Gumprecht as the heir to the great masters of French lute music....
(b Dunkirk, July 10, 1697; d Tournai, Feb 26, 1770). French composer and violinist. He lived at first in his native town, then in Lille and finally in Tournai. Not to be confused with a namesake who was an ordinaire de la musique royale, he was active as a teacher of the violin and dancing in colleges and monasteries, in Rouen, Mons and elsewhere; he styled himself ‘maître de danse et de violon, pensionné des Dames de Marquette pour y enseigner à danser aux demoiselles pensionnaires’ and ‘maître de ballets qui se font dans les tragédies des colleges des RR.PP. Jésuites et Augustins'. He seems to have followed this career both in Lille and in Tournai, where, after a petition of 1742, he is mentioned as a dancing and violin master. The town granted him a substantial pension which continued to be paid to his widow. Hanot's reputation seems to have reached Paris at the time of the publication of the ‘Airs’ which form part of the ...
(b Frankfurt, May 8, 1696; d after 1755). German bass viol player and composer. Details of his early life are obscure, but von Uffenbach evidently met him at Strasbourg in 1714 (see Preussner). Hardt then spent five years as treasurer and viol player to King Stanislas during his residence at Zweibrücken. In 1720 he entered the service of the Bishop of Würzburg, and when this Kapelle was disbanded in 1724 he found employment at the court of Württemberg. He remained there for the rest of his career, serving first as an ordinary member of the orchestra and later as Konzertmeister and Kapellmeister. When Charles Alexander died (1737) severe economies were made at the Stuttgart court and Hardt was one of the few musicians retained. In 1738 he was listed as Kapellmeister (under Brescianello) with a basic salary of 400 gulders and gifts in kind to the value of 300 gulders. On the accession of Charles Eugene (...
Jane M. Bowers
(fl 1737–68). French composer and violinist. She did not come from La Couture where the Hotteterre family of musicians originated, and there is no demonstrable connection between her and that family. In April 1737 the Mercure de France reported that ‘Miss Hotteterre, young lady recently arrived from the provinces, has played [at the Concert Spirituel] several times on the violin various sonatas by Mr Leclair with all the intelligence, vivacity, and precision imaginable’. At the end of 1740 her Premier livre de sonates for violin and continuo appeared in Paris, dedicated to Jean-Marie Leclair l'aîné. An ‘investigation of bowstrokes for novices’ included in this book suggests that she gave lessons on the violin. The publication of her second Concerto à cinq, for four violins, organ and cello, dedicated to Princess Adélaïde, was reported in the Mercure of January 1744. A second book of violin sonatas is listed in a catalogue of Le Clerc ...
Rudolf A. Rasch
(b Groningen, Nov 15, 1696; d Alkmaar, March 6, 1753). Dutch composer, organist and carillonneur. He probably received musical instruction from his father, Petrus Havingha (c1650–1728), organist in Groningen. Gerhardus was appointed organist first in Appingedam and then, from 1722 until his death, at the Laurenskerk in Alkmaar. On his arrival in Alkmaar, he found the organ in a state of disrepair and proposed a reconstruction after contemporary German principles (including equal temperament) by Franz Caspar Schnitger, a son of Arp Schnitger; this was approved by the city magistrate and was carried through, although strenuously opposed by some citizens of Alkmaar. Havingha defended his position in an apologia entitled Oorspronk en voortgang der orgelen (Alkmaar, 1727/R), which was answered by pamphlets stating the opposing case.
Havingha published a volume of harpsichord suites,VIII Suites gecomponeerd voor de clavecijmbal off Spinet (Amsterdam, 1724...
(b ?Yorkshire, c1705; d London, Feb 1765). English cellist, composer and bassoonist. As a young man he played in chamber music concerts in Yorkshire, along with a group of unnamed German and Italian musicians based in York. After his marriage to Mary Preistland in York in 1732, he moved to London where he was a cellist in Thomas Arne's orchestra at Vauxhall, Drury Lane and Covent Garden. In 1758 he was appointed musician-in-ordinary (bassoon) to George II.
Unusually for a composer working at Vauxhall he did not publish any songs or keyboard solos. His works (6 Solos, fl, bc (London, c1745), 1 ed. J. Barlow (London, 1979); 6 Concertos, 4 vn, va, vc, bc, op.2a (London, c1749)) combine italianate ceremonial vigour with highly emotional slow movements. A smooth serenity reflects his English heritage, with echoes of Yorkshire country dances.
An engraving of Hebden by Johann Faber (...
revised by Christian Ahrens
(b Kleinheringen, nr Naumburg, Nov 27, 1668; d Dresden, Nov 15, 1750). German pantaleonist, violinist and composer. He is believed to have earned his living as a young man in Leipzig student circles by playing the violin and teaching dancing and keyboard instruments. Under the threat of arrest for debt, he fled to a village near Merseburg where he entered the pastor’s household as tutor to his children. There he had the idea of developing an art instrument from the rustic form of the dulcimer used for dance music in the village inn; the pastor was a skilled craftsman and helped him in the transformation. In its final form it had double strings of metal and gut. Although the instrument attracted attention because of its flexible dynamic variation, it is not known whether Hebenstreit planned it with this characteristic in mind. (For illustration see Hellendaal, Pieter.)
The instrument’s development must have been completed by ...
[Pietro, Petrus, Peter]
(b Rotterdam, bap. April 1, 1721; d Cambridge, April 19, 1799). Dutch violinist, composer and organist, active also in England. When he was nine the family moved to Utrecht, where he was appointed organist of the Nicolaikerk on 11 January 1732. In 1737 the family moved to Amsterdam. The music lover Mattheus Lestevenon, Secretary of Amsterdam, enabled Hellendaal to study with Tartini. Before November 1743 he returned from Italy and appeared as a violinist in certain Amsterdam inns. On 14 February 1744 he obtained a privilege for publishing his compositions, and his first two sets of violin sonatas were issued in Amsterdam. He married the daughter of an Amsterdam surgeon in June 1744.
From 1749 to 1751 Hellendaal was at Leiden, where he enrolled at the university and did his utmost to obtain a foothold in academic music-loving circles. He made frequent public appearances there and at The Hague and Delft. Yet he found little opportunity for building up a livelihood in the Netherlands. On ...
(b Craigmore, nr Garvagh, Co. Derry, 1695; d Magilligan, Co. Derry, 1807). Irish traditional harper. Blinded by smallpox at the age of three, he took up music as a career, this being one of the few occupations open to a blind man at that time. He began to study the harp with Bridget O’Cahan when he was 12, and other teachers were John Garragher, Loughlin Fanning and Patrick Connor. At 18 he began his career as an itinerant harper, and spent many years travelling through Ireland and Scotland. He was noted as a fine performer and for his ability to intersperse his playing with stories and humorous anecdotes. While in Edinburgh in 1745, he played and sang for Prince Charles Edward Stuart, the Young Pretender.
When too old for constant travel, he settled in Magilligan, where he spent the rest of his long life. He still travelled on occasion, and went to Belfast to play at the harpers' festival of ...
Craig H. Russell
(b Valencia, late 1720/early 1721; d Madrid, Feb 4, 1763). Spanish violinist and composer. His father was José de Herrando (c1700–c1750), a composer and performer in musical comedies. Herrando was the most important violinist in 18th-century Spain: he played for the most prestigious musical institutions and wrote the only substantial Spanish violin tutor of the time. He may have received musical training from Giacomo Facco. He entered the service of the Real Convento de la Encarnación in Madrid probably in the 1740s and became principal violinist in 1756. Farinelli employed him as one of 16 violinists at the Coliseo del Buen Retiro; he appears in its records for 1747 and 1758. He was also selected for Farinelli's orchestra at Aranjuez. His high reputation in these circles is born out by one of Jacopo Amiconi's official royal portraits in which three musicians, Herrando, Farinelli and Domenico Scarlatti, are depicted in a balcony overlooking the royal family. A tapestry in La Granja depicts the same triumvirate appearing in a window. Some of Herrando's compositions were written at Farinelli's request, such as the six sonatinas for five-string violin. Herrando also forged professional affiliations with the well-respected Geminiani family. Miguel Geminiani (brother of Francesco) also played violin at the Buen Retiro, and Herrando was his successor as principal violinist at the royal chapel; Geminiani held the post until ...
revised by Steffen Voss
(b Grossgottern, Thuringia, April 14, 1676; d Darmstadt, May 16, 1762). German composer and viol player. While still at school in Langensalza and at Eisenach he became known as an excellent viol player. The Landgrave Ernst Ludwig of Hesse-Darmstadt heard him play in 1692 and attached him to his court in Giessen, where he also studied law at the university. In 1694 he went with the court to Darmstadt, becoming an assistant in the government chancellery, playing in the court orchestra and studying music with the elderly Kapellmeister, W.C. Briegel. Between spring 1698 and autumn 1701 he developed his instrumental technique still further under Antoine Forqueray and Marin Marais in Paris at the Landgrave’s expense.
After his return to Darmstadt he was installed as viol player and secretary for war. On 3 December 1701 he married Anna Katharina Merck, a member of the well-known family of pharmacists. Tours as a concert virtuoso took him in ...
(b Darmstadt, Nov 8, 1716; d Darmstadt, Sept 15, 1772). German viol player. His parents, the viol player and war secretary Ernst Christian Hesse and the singer Johanna Elisabeth Döbricht, were both employed by Landgrave Ernst Ludwig at the Darmstadt court. Ludwig ChristianHesse entered Jena University in 1734 and began law studies at Halle University on 8 July 1737. The following year he was appointed in Darmstadt as government lawyer and chamber musician, but in 1740 the new Landgrave Ludwig VIII cut the budget, and Hesse was one of several who left under the new conditions. In 1741 he was appointed in Berlin, where the newly crowned King of Prussia, Frederick II (‘the Great’) was building a Hofkapelle of impressive size and quality. Hesse remained in the Hofkapelle until August 1763. His activities during the next three years are not known, but by September 1766 he had moved into the service of the Prince of Prussia, who became King Frederick William II following his uncle Frederick’s death in ...
(fl 1700–10). French composer and viol player. He published the first collection of pieces for treble viol in France: Trois suites de pièces à deux violles (Paris, 1701). In 1710, when he was living in Rouen, his Second livre de pièces pour le dessus et basse de violle was published in Paris. The first collection was also reprinted in Amsterdam (a unique copy with the composer’s corrections is at GB-DRc ). Each of the three suites of the 1701 collection, written for treble and seven-string bass viols, includes one or two preludes, an allemande, courante, sarabande, gigue, and several additional movements (some with doubles): gavotte, menuet, rondeau, chaconne, rigaudon or ‘sonate’. A few may be played alone (the prelude, allemande and rondeau of no.1 and the prelude of no.2). The difficulty of Heudelinne’s music is caused by its passages and broken rather than chordal figuration; a melody with few chords or double stops characterized for him the nature of the treble viol (...
Douglas A. Lee
(b Ebersdorf, Jan 22, 1707; d Zerbst, Nov 25, 1773). German violinist and composer. He was the son of Christoph and Magdalena Höckh. As a child he was instructed in the violin by his father and in singing by the schoolmaster Ferdinand Dorfmüller. When he was 15 he went to Pruck to study with Michael Schade, then the city musician. From Pruck he entered the Franz Paul Graf Weilli regiment as oboist and spent the next two years in the military, stationed at Temesvár and Orsova. When the regiment moved to Siebenburgen, Höckh was mustered out and began his travels through Poland in the company of several other aspiring musicians, the violinist Franz Benda, the flautist Georg Zarth and Wilhelm Weidner, horn and viola player. In his autobiography, Benda gave a delightful account of the adventures and activities of this group during their travels. They reached Warsaw and entered the service of the governor, Sukascheffski Szaniawsky, Höckh as horn player and second violin. Benda later moved to the court of Crown Prince Friedrich of Prussia; he declined the offer of a position at Zerbst and recommended Höckh instead, and as a result Höckh moved to Zerbst as director in ...
(b Rastenberg, Thuringia, Nov 11, 1690; d Rastenberg, c1756). German composer and wind player. According to Gerber, Hoffmann was a man outstanding in both arts and sciences. At Jena he studied mathematics and architecture, and in 1719, as architect or surveyor, he entered the service of the Duke of Weimar. Under instruction from the Weimar Kapellmeister J.W. Drese, Hoffmann then studied musical theory and later turned to the composition of cantatas and other church music, of which he left a considerable amount (presumably unpublished). As a player Hoffmann was irked by the defects of contemporary wind instruments; he is reputed to have made improvements to both the flute and the oboe. Some manuscript notes added by Walther to the first edition of his Lexicon refer to this work. These, however, are somewhat ambiguous and hardly justify the assumption of some scholars that Hoffmann added g♯″ and ...