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date: 22 January 2020

Rosselli, John locked

  • Rosemary Williamson


(b Florence, June 8, 1927; d Cambridge, Jan 16, 2001). British writer of partly Italian descent. He studied at Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania, and was a research student in history with Herbert Butterfield at Cambridge (1948–51). He then worked for the (Manchester) Guardian, as leader writer, features editor and deputy London editor, before moving to Sussex University, 1964–89, to teach history, finally as reader. Rosselli worked as a critic but was chiefly noted for his writings on the social and economic background of opera, particularly in Italy. His authoritative The Opera Industry in Italy (1984) explored aspects of operatic history and culture unfamiliar to the music historian, as too did his Music and Musicians in Nineteenth-Century Italy (1991) and his studies of the role, in the broadest sense, of the singer. These include important articles on castratos, the singer’s relation to his patrons, a study of contractual documents between pupils and teachers, and a book on the profession itself, ...

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Acta musicologica
Rivista italiana di musicologia
Cambridge Opera Journal