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Luigi Cherubini

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Luigi Cherubini (1760–1842) was an Italian composer who spent most of his working life in France. Although his music is not well known today, it was greatly admired in his time. Beethoven regarded him as the greatest of his contemporaries.

Cherubini was born Maria Luigi Carlo Zenobio Salvatore Cherubini on 14th September 1760 in Florence. His instruction in music began at the age of six with his father, himself a musician. By the age of thirteen he had composed several religious works. From 1778 to 1780, he studied music in Bologna and Milan. Cherubini’s early operas, settings of Italian libretti by Metastasio, adhered closely to the conventions of opera seria.

In 1788, Cherubini made a brief visit to London, where he started work on a setting of a French libretto by Jean-François Marmontel, Démophon. Cherubini’s music began to show more originality and daring. Later the same year he settled in Paris. His first major success here was Lodoïska/i] (1791) which was admired for its realistic heroism. This was followed by Eliza (1794), set in the Swiss Alps, and Médée (1797), which is Cherubini’s best-known work. Les deux journées (1800), in which Cherubini simplified his style somewhat, was a popular success. These and other operas were premiered at the Théâtre Feydeau.

Cherubini’s popularity declined markedly after Les deux journées, with Parisian audiences turning to younger composers such as Boieldieu. His opera-ballet Anacréon was an outright failure.

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  • Darth_Calcifer

    Requiem is awesome. Don't know why he is so underrated.

    12 Mar 2014 Reply
  • Grosseteste

    benzs_s: People who can't be bothered to tag their music with composers' full names are sometimes lucky, in that there's no other artist with that name; in those cases, if enough people vote for the name to be corrrected, it's redirected. Very often, however, there's more than one person or even a modern band) using that name (see, for example, Biber, and even when there isn't, people have to vote (over on the right, "Is this artist name wrong or misspelt?"). Why not just use the composer's full name, instead of ignoring part of it and then insisting that Last.fm clear up your mess?

    23 Sep 2010 Reply
  • musinumfan

    http://www.last.fm/group/Classical+Radio

    11 Apr 2009 Reply
  • benzs_s

    ok, I don't understand.... Mozart corrects to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Beethoven to Ludwig Van Beethoven, Verdi to Giuseppe Verdi.. why doesn't Cherubini correct to Luigi Cherubini?

    7 Apr 2008 Reply
  • Alucard89

    Why is he so underrated? :(

    13 Oct 2006 Reply

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