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Ildebrando Pizzetti

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Ildebrando Pizzetti (September 20, 1880–February 13, 1968) was an Italian composer of classical music.

Pizzetti was part of the “Generation of 1880” along with Ottorino Respighi and Gian-Francesco Malipiero. They were among the first Italian composers in some time whose primary contributions were not in opera. (The instrumental and a cappella traditions had never died in Italian music and had produced, for instance, the string quartets of Antonio Scontrino (1850-1922) and the works of Respighi’s teacher Martucci; but with the “Generation of 1880” these traditions became stronger.)

Ildebrando Pizzetti was born in Parma, the son of Odoardo Pizzetti, a pianist and piano teacher who was Ildebrando’s first teacher. At first Pizzetti seemed headed for a career as a playwright — he had written several plays, two of which had been produced — before he decided in 1895 on a career in music and entered the Conservatorium of Parma.

There he was taught there from 1897 by Giovanni Tebaldini and gained the beginnings of his lifelong interest in the early music of Italy, reflected in his own music and his writings.

He taught at the Conservatory in Florence (directed from 1917 to 1923, directed conservatory at Milan from 1923 onwards.) His students included Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Olga Rudge and Franco Donatoni. Also a music critic, he wrote several books on the music of Italy and of Greece and co-founded a musical journal.

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