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Giovanni Paisiello

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Giovanni Paisiello (or Paesiello) (May 9, 1740 – June 5, 1816), was an Italian composer of the Classical era.

Paisiello was born at Taranto, where he attended the Jesuit college. The beauty of his singing voice attracted so much attention that in 1754 he was sent to the Conservatorio di S. Onofrio at Naples, where he studied under Francesco Durante, and in due course became assistant master. For the theatre of the Conservatorio, which he left in 1763, he wrote some intermezzi, one of which attracted so much notice that he was invited to write two operas, La Pupilla and Il Mondo al Rovescio, for Bologna, and a third, Il Marchese di Tidipano, for Rome.

His reputation being now firmly established, he settled for some years at Naples, where, despite the popularity of Niccolò Piccinni, Domenico Cimarosa and Pietro Guglielmi, of whose triumphs he was bitterly jealous, he produced a series of highly successful operas, one of which, L’ldolo cinese, made a deep impression upon the Neapolitan public.

In 1772 Paisiello began to write church music, and composed a requiem for Gennara di Borbone, of the reigning dynasty. In the same year he married Cecilia Pallini, and the marriage was a happy one. In 1776 Paisiello was invited by the empress Catherine II of Russia to St Petersburg, where he remained for eight years, producing, among other charming works, his masterpiece, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, which soon attained a European reputation.

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  • Chiaroscurist

    I wish I could hear "the beauty of his singing voice".... but alas.

    28 Aug 2011 Reply
  • BlackGrifon

    С одной стороны, жаль, что Паизиелло широко не известен. С другой - его имя не запятнано масс-культурой. Так пусть торжествует изящество и доброе лукавство!

    12 Jul 2008 Reply

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