Franco Donatoni

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Franco Donatoni

Franco Donatoni (9 June 1927 – 17 August 2000) was an Italian composer.


Born in Verona, Donatoni started studying violin at the age of seven, and frequented the local Music Academy. Later he studied at the Milan Conservatory and, from 1948, at the Bologna Conservatory (Osmond-Smith 2001).

At least three generations of composers studied with Donatoni. Among his Italian pupils were Sandro Gorli, Matteo D'Amico, Roberto Carnevale, Giulio Castagnoli, Ivan Fedele, Luigi Manfrin, Giorgio Magnanensi, Luca Mosca, Riccardo Nova, Riccardo Piacentini, Fausto Romitelli, Pietro Borradori, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Alessandro Solbiati, Piero Niro, Claudio Scannavini, Giovanni Verrando, Nicola Straffelini and among his foreign pupils Michael Dellaira, Pascal Dusapin, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Magnus Lindberg, Katia Tiutiunnik, Javier Torres Maldonado, Billy Cowie, and Juan Trigos. See: List of music students by teacher: C to F#Franco Donatoni.

Donatoni died in Milan in 2000, wishing to work in his second book of his monumental "Arte della Fuga”, for large orchestra, based on the original work of Johann Sebastian Bach.[citation needed]



  • Osmond-Smith, David. 2001. "Donatoni, Franco". The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, second edition, edited by Stanley Sadie and John Tyrrell. London: Macmillan Publishers.

Further reading[edit]

  • Luppi, Guillermo. 2016. "Shedding Some Light on Donatoni's Lumen". Perspectives of New Music 54, no. 1 (Winter): 179–95.

External links[edit]

  • Biography by David Wright
  • Obituary in the Musical Times
  • Recording of "Arpège", for ensemble.
  • A reminiscence of Donatoni by Jeffrey Levine
  • Excerpts from sound archives of Donatoni's works.
  • "Franco Donatoni biography" (in French). IRCAM.