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Gioachino Antonio Rossini Essay

1495 words - 6 pages

Gioachino Antonio RossiniBy Crista NelsonGioachino Antonio Rossini, nicknamed 'Signor Crescendo' was an Italian composer who created 39 operas as well as sacred and chamber music. His best known works are The Barber of Seville, La Cenerentola, and William Tell.He was born February 29, 1792, a leap year, into a family of musicians in Pesaro, a town on the Adriatic coast of Italy. His father, Giuseppe, was a horn player and inspector of slaughterhouses, his mother, Anna, was a singer and a baker's daughter. Rossini's parents began his musical training early, and by the age of six he was playing the triangle in his father's band.In 1804 the Rossini's moved to Bologna to be closer to the center ...view middle of the document...

He was good at his job but had a sense of humor about him which could easily cause offence to the audience of the other actors. His sense of humor did not cause him any harm though, because in the fall of 1805 at the age of 13 he had a stage role of Adolfo in Paer's Opera semiseria, Camilla.Also at the age of 13 he composed several individual numbers to a libretto by Vincenza Mombelli, called Demetrio e Polibio, and wrote his first opera but it wasn't staged until several years later in 1812. In 1806, at the age of 14, Rossini became a cello student under Cavedagni at the Conservatorio of Bologna, and in 1807 he was admitted to the counterpoint class of Padre Stanislao Mattei. His insight into orchestral resources is generally ascribed not to the strict compositional rules he learned from Mattei, but to knowledge gained independently while scoring the quartets and symphonies of Haydn and Mozart. At Bologna he was known as "il Tedeschino" ("the Little German") on account of his devotion to Mozart.In 1812, at the age of 18 his first opera La cambiale di matrimonio finally came to light in Venice through the friendly interposition of the Marquis Cavalli. This opera was one of seven that he wrote within the next 16 months of his life, all but one of these were comedies. This level of activity continued in the ensuing years. His first operas to win international acclaim came from 1813, while he wrote for different Venetian theatres: the serious opera, Tancredi, which showed a fusion of lyrical expression and dramatic highlights, with its clear melodies, breathtaking harmonic inflections and colorful orchestral writing, and the hilariously comical, L'italiana in Algeri, which moved easily between the sentimental, the patriotic, to the absurd and sheer lunacy.He wrote two other operas for Milan which were less successful. But in 1815 Rossini went to Naples as musical and artistic director of the Teatro San Carlo, which led to a concentration on serious opera. While there he was also allowed to compose for other theatres, and from this came two of his supreme comedies, written for Rome, Il barbiere di Siviglia (The Barber of Seville) and La Cenerentola.The Barber of Seville which was first introduced in 1816 is said to be the greatest Italian comic opera of all time. When it was first introduced though, it was a failure, but it quickly became admired by all who saw it. In the following year 1817, La Cenerentola became the center of attention. It was...

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