Kerzelli family

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Kerzelli, Cherzelli, Kerzelly or Kertsel (Russian: Керцелли, Керцель or Керцеллий) was the surname of a large family of musicians of Italian, Czech or Austrian origin [the available information is vague and contradictory], which settled in Russia in the 18th century.

  • Iosif Kerzelli or Iohann (also known as I. B. Kerzelli) was a composer and journalist working for the magazine «Музыкальные увеселения» ("Muzykalye uveseleniya" –"The Musical Amusements", 1774-1775). His trios, choruses, dances etc. were printed there. In 1773 he started a musical college in Moscow, where his sons taught.
  • Franz Iosifovich Kerzelli was a cellist, Kapellmeister and composer of a cello concerto, a son of Iosif Kerzelli. He ran a series of concerts with symphony and rogovoi (horn) orchestras until the middle of the 1790s.
  • Ivan Kerzelli or Iohann Kerzelly (also known as I. I. Kerzelli, Iosif Iosifovich Kerzelli, or Iosif Kertsel, Russian: Иван Керцелли, Иосиф Иосифович Керцелли, И. И. Керцелли, or Иосиф Керцель) was a conductor in 18th-century Imperial Russia. (see main article)
  • Mikhail Franzevich Kerzelli (born c1740 [or 1750, or 1755], Vienna – died end of December 1818, Moscow) was a pianist, violinist, teacher and composer of string quartets, violin duets, orchestral and liturgical compositions. (see main article)
  • Ivan Franzevich Kerzelli (born c1760 [or 1765], died May 26 (OS May 14) 1820) was a composer and the Kapellmeister of Petrovsky Theatre in Moscow.

He wrote comic operas to libretti by Vasily Levshin:

  • Svad'ba gospodina Voldyreva (Свадьба господина Волдырева – The Wedding of Mr Voldyrev), one-act opera 1793 Moscow)
  • Korol na okhote (Король на охоте – The King on the Hunting, three-act opera, 1794 Moscow)
  • Mnimye vdovtsy (Мнимые вдовцы – The False Widowers), three-act opera, 1794 Moscow)
  • Svoya nosha ne tyanet (Своя ноша не тянет – The Burden Is Not Heavy if It Is Yours, two-act opera, probably together with Vasily Pashkevich, 1794 Moscow)
  • Molodye poskoreye starych mogut obmanut' ( Молодые поскорее старых могут обманывать – The Young Can Deceive Better Than Old ), one-act opera (1796 Litvinovo)


  • Anton Kerzelli, was a sheet music seller. He had a music shop in Moscow
  • Lev Kerzelli, was a cellist, a pupil of Bernhard Romberg (1761-1841).


  • Энциклопедический словарь Брокгауза и Ефрона (1890—1907).
  • Энциклопедический музыкальный словарь, Сост. Б. Штейнпресс и И. Ямпольский, Москва, 1966

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