Giuseppe Martucci

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Giuseppe Martucci.

Giuseppe Martucci (Italian pronunciation: [dʒuˈzɛppe marˈtuttʃi]; Capua, 6 January 1856 – Naples, 1 June 1909) was an Italian composer, conductor, pianist and teacher. As a composer and teacher he was influential in reviving Italian interest in non-operatic music. As a conductor he helped to introduce Richard Wagner's operas to Italy and also gave important early concerts of English music there.

Career[edit]

Martucci was born at Capua, in Campania. He learned the basics of music from his father, Gaetano, who played the trumpet. He was a child prodigy, performing on the piano at the age of 8.[1] From the age of 11, he was a student at the Naples Conservatory, on the recommendation of professor Beniamino Cesi,[2] the latter being a former student of Sigismond Thalberg. Martucci became a student in composition with Paolo Serrao. Martucci subsequently (from 1880 onwards) held a professorship and became director in 1902. Among his students was Ottorino Respighi.

His son Paolo, born in Naples in 1883, also became a pianist of note, briefly teaching at the Cincinnati Conservatory.[1][2]

He died in Naples in 1909.

Pianist[edit]

Martucci's career as an international pianist commenced with a tour through Germany, France and England in 1875, at the age of 19.[3] He was appointed pianoforte professor at the Naples Conservatory in 1880,[2] and moved to Bologna in 1886, replacing Luigi Mancinelli there; in 1902 he returned for the last time to Naples, as director of the Royal Conservatory of Music.[1][3]

Conductor[edit]

Martucci's career as conductor started in 1881. As a conductor he helped introduce Richard Wagner's operas to Italy, conducting the first Italian performance of Tristan und Isolde [4] in 1888 in Bologna. As well as performing Charles Villiers Stanford's 3rd ("Irish") Symphony in Bologna in 1898,[5] he also conducted perhaps the only concert of all-British orchestral music on the European continent in the whole period 1851–1900.[2] He also included music by Brahms, Lalo, Goldmark and others in his programs.

Composer[edit]

Martucci began as a composer at the age of 16, with short piano works. He wrote no operas, which was unusual among Italian composers of his generation, but instead concentrated on instrumental music and songs, producing also an oratorio, Samuel.[6]

Legacy[edit]

Martucci was championed by Arturo Toscanini during much of the latter's career. The NBC Symphony Orchestra performed a number of Martucci's orchestral works in 1938, 1940, 1941, 1946, and 1953; although the performances were preserved on transcription discs, none was approved for commercial release by Toscanini. All of these performances have been given unofficial release in recent years, on LP as well as CD format. NBC musical director Samuel Chotzinoff, in his 1956 book "Toscanini--An Intimate Portrait", said that every time the Maestro proposed scheduling Martucci's works, certain orchestra members and NBC authorities objected; but the conductor was not to be deterred. Some Toscanini biographers (including Mortimer Frank and Harvey Sachs) have questioned the merit of the compositions and indicate that they do not care for them, speculating that Toscanini may have performed them out of a sense of duty. But enthusiasts of Martucci have no difficulty in understanding the conductor's advocacy.[7]

Gian Francesco Malipiero said of Martucci's second symphony that it was "the beginning of the rebirth of non-operatic Italian music." Martucci was an instrumentalist pur sang, taking 'absolute music' as his highest goal.

In 1989 Francesco D'Avalos tried to start a revival of Martucci's music by recording four CDs with major works including the two piano concertos, two symphonies, and La canzone dei ricordi. These discs were distributed by ASV Records and later by Brilliant Classics.[8]

In 2009, to mark the centenary of Martucci's death, Naxos Records released a series of CDs devoted to his orchestral music, featuring the Symphony Orchestra of Rome conducted by Francesco La Vecchia.[9] In 2011 Riccardo Muti and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra featured Martucci's Nocturne, Op. 70, No. 1 during the orchestra's tour of Europe.[10]

Works[edit]

Symphonic[edit]

  • Polka (1871)
  • Colore orientale, Op. 44, No. 3 (1880, 1908)
  • Danza, Op. 44, No. 6 (1880, 1908)
  • "Novelletta", for orchestra, Op. 6/1 (1907)
  • Gavotta, Op. 55, No. 2 (1888, 1901)
  • Gigue (Giga), Op. 61, No. 3 (1883, 1892)
  • Canzonetta, Op. 65, No. 2 (1884, 1889)
  • Nocturne, Op. 70, No.1 (1891)
  • Symphony No. 1 in D minor, Op. 75 (1888–95)[6]
  • Symphony No. 2 in F major, Op. 81 (1899–1904)
  • Novelletta", Op. 82, No. 2 (1905, 1907)

Concertante[edit]

  • Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 40 (1878)
  • Tema con variazioni in E-flat, Op. 58 (1882) (rev. 1900 & 1905) (orchestral arrangement by Martucci?)
  • Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat minor, Op. 66 (1885)
  • Andante for Cello and orchestra, Op. 69, No. 2 (1888) (rev. 1907)

Organ[edit]

  • Sonata in D minor, Op. 36 (1879)

Chamber Music[edit]

  • Divertimento [after Verdi's La forza del destino] for Flute and Piano (1869)
  • Piano Trio [after Offenbach's La belle Hélène] (1869)
  • Violin Sonata, Op. 22 (1874)
  • Piano Quintet in C major, Op. 45 (1878)
  • Cello Sonata in F sharp minor, Op. 52 (1880)
  • Minuetto for String Quartet, Op. 55, No. 1 (1880, 1893)
  • Serenata for String Quartet, Op. 57, No. 2 (1886, 1893)
  • Piano Trio No. 1 in C major, Op. 59 (1882)
  • Piano Trio No. 2 in E flat major, Op. 62 (1883)
  • Momento musicale for String Quartet, Op. 64, No. 1 (1884, 1893)
  • 3 Pieces for Violin and Piano, Op. 67 (1886)
  • 3 Pieces for Cello and Piano, Op. 69 (1888)
  • Melodia for Violin and Piano (1890)
  • 2 Romances for Cello and Piano, Op. 72 (1890)

Piano[edit]

  • 3 polkas and a mazurka (1867)
  • Fantasia sull'opera La forza del destino, Op. 1 (1871)
  • Polka improvvisata (1872)
  • Capriccio No. 1, Op. 2 (1872)
  • Capriccio No. 2, Op. 3 (1872)
  • Mazurka di concerto, Op. 4 (1872)
  • Andante e polka, Op. 5 (1873)
  • Tarantella, Op. 6 (1873)
  • Agitato, Op. 7 (1873)
  • Pensieri sull'opera Un ballo in maschera for piano duet, Op. 8, (1873)
  • Studio di concerto, Op. 9 (1873)
  • Pensiero musicale, Op. 10 (1873)
  • Tempo di mazurka, Op. 11 (1873)
  • Capriccio No. 3, Op. 12 (1874)
  • Allegro appassionato, Op. 13 (1874)
  • Fuga, Op. 14 (1874)
  • Capriccio No. 4, Op. 15 (1874)
  • Melodia No. 1, Op. 16 (1874)
  • Improvviso, Op. 17 (1874)
  • Fuga a due parti, Op. 18 (1874)
  • Polacca No. 1, Op. 19 (1874)
  • Barcarola No. 1, Op. 20 (1874)
  • Melodia No. 2, Op. 21 (1874)
  • Scherzo, Op. 23 (1875)
  • Capriccio di concerto, Op. 24 (1875)
  • Nocturne: Souvenir de Milan, Op. 25 (1875)
  • Caprice en forme d'étude, Op. 26 (1875)
  • 3 romances, Op. 27 (1875)
  • Fughetta and Fugue, Op. 28 (1875)
  • La caccia, Op. 29 (1876)
  • Barcarola No. 2, Op. 30 (1876)
  • 4 pieces, Op. 31 (1876)
  • Fantasia in D minor, Op. 32 (1876)
  • 3 pieces, Op. 33 (1876)
  • Piano Sonata in E-major, Op. 34 (1876)
  • Mazurka, Op. 35 (1876)
  • Racconto in memory of Bellini, Op. 37 (1877)
  • 12 preludi facili (1877)
  • 6 pieces, Op. 38 (1878)
  • Souvenir de Paris, Op. 39 (1878)
  • Sonata facile, Op. 41 (1878)
  • 3 Notturninos, Op. 42 (1880)
  • 7 pieces, Op. 43 (1878–82)
  • 6 pieces, Op. 44 (1879–80)
  • 3 Walzes, Op. 46( 1879)
  • Studio, Op. 47 (1879)
  • Polacca No. 2, Op. 48 (1879)
  • 3 romances, Op. 49 (1880–82)
  • Novella, Op. 50 (1880)
  • Fantasia in G minor, Op. 51 (1880)
  • 3 Scherzi, Op. 53 (1881)
  • Studio caratteristico, Op. 54 (1880)
  • 2 pieces, Op. 55 (1880–8)
  • Improvviso-fantasia, Op. 56 (1880)
  • 2 pieces, Op. 57 (1886)
  • Tema con variazioni, Op. 58 (1882), also for orchestra and 2 pianos (1900, 1905) (arrangement by Martucci?)
  • Foglie sparse: album di 6 pezzi, Op. 60 (1883)
  • 3 pieces, Op. 61 (1883)
  • Moto perpetuo, Op. 63 (1884)
  • 3 pieces, Op. 64 (1884)
  • 3 pieces, Op. 65 (1884)
  • Romanza in E-major (1889)
  • 2 Nocturnes, Op. 70 (1891)
  • Deux pièces, Op. 73 (1893)
  • Trèfles à 4 feuilles, Op. 74 (1895)
  • Trois morceaux, Op. 76 (1896)
  • 2 pieces, Op. 77 (1896)
  • 3 small pieces, Op. 78 (1900)
  • 3 small pieces, Op. 79 (1901)
  • 2 caprices, Op. 80 (1902)
  • Melodia No. 3 (1902)
  • 3 pieces, Op. 82 (1905)
  • Novelletta, for piano, Op. 82/2 (1905)
  • 3 pieces, Op. 83 (1905)

Vocal[edit]

  • Messa a grande orchestra for solo voices, chorus and orchestra (1870–71)
  • Alma gentil (S. Pellico) for Soprano or Tenor and Piano (1872)
  • Samuel (F. Persico), oratorio for solo voices, chorus and orchestra (1881, 1906)
  • La canzone dei ricordi (R. Pagliara), (Op. 68) song cycle, Mezzo Soprano or Baritone and piano (1887)
  • La canzone dei ricordi (R. Pagliara), (Op. 68) song cycle, Mezzo Soprano or Baritone and orchestra (1898)
  • Sogni (C. Ricci), (Op. 68) voice and piano (1888)
  • Pagine sparse (Ricci), Op. 68 for voice and piano (1888)
  • Ballando! (Ricci) for voice and piano (1889)
  • Due canti (Pagliara), (Op. 68) for boys’ voices and organ (1889)
  • Tre pezzi (G. Carducci), Op. 84 for voice and piano (1906)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Greene, David Mason (1985). Greene's Biographical Encyclopedia of Composers. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday. pp. 830–1. ISBN 0-385-14278-1. Retrieved 2007-12-29. 
  2. ^ a b c d Gatti, Guido M. (1954). Blom, Eric, ed. Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians (Fifth Edition ed.). New York: St. Martin's Press Inc. pp. V (L–M): 602–603. OCLC 6085892. 
  3. ^ a b "Martucci Biography". Retrieved 2007-12-29. [dead link]
  4. ^ Ewen, David (1977, more recent 2007 reprint available online) [1937]. Composers of yesterday : a biographical and critical guide to the most important composers of the past. St. Clair Shores, Mich.: Scholarly Press. p. 278. ISBN 0-403-01551-0. Retrieved 2007-12-22.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  5. ^ Dibble, Jeremy (2002). Charles Villiers Stanford: man and musician. London; New York: Oxford University Press. p. 299. ISBN 0-19-816383-5. Retrieved 2007-12-22. 
  6. ^ a b Schlüren, Christoph (2003). "Preface to Score of Martucci First Symphony". Musikproduktion Juergen Hoeflich. Retrieved 28 January 2010. 
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^ [2]
  9. ^ [3]
  10. ^ Caro, Mark (30 August 2011). "Muti gives killer glare, musicians swap notes". Chicago Tribune. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Perrino, Folco (1996) [1992]. Giuseppe Martucci (in Italian). Novara: Centro studi martucciani. OCLC 39797377. 
  • The Complete Orchestral Works of Martucci is available at Brilliant Classics, 4 CD box, recording Philharmonia Orchestra, 1989, conductor Francesco D'Avalos.
  • Piano concertos Opp. 40 and 66 are available from a CD by Orchestre Philharmonique de Montpelier, with conductor Massimo De Benart and pianist Jeffrey Swann: Agora Musica B000LH5VIS.

External links[edit]