Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Giuseppe Verdi

Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco was born at Roncole di Busseto, in the Duchy of Parma, the 10th of October 1813, the son of Luigia Uttini, a spinner, and Carlo Verdi, landlord of an inn.
Carlo came from a family of farmers in the Piacenza area. He had put aside some money and opened a modest tavern in Roncole where he divided his time between his role as a landlord and working in the fields. From an early age Giuseppe had music lessons from the church organist and practised on an old spinet that his father had given him. These musical studies were carried on in an irregular manner until Antonio Barezzi, intervened. He was a rich local tradesman, businessman, and music lover. President of the local music Society he was fond of the Verdi family and young Giuseppe in particular. He welcomed Giuseppe into his own home and paid for his regular academic studies.

Verdi acquired experience in the church at Busseto, but already the little village was becoming rather confined for him. Helped by Barezzi he decided to enrol at the Milan Conservatory, which would later named after him. However he was unable to pass the entrance exam because of “an incorrect position of the hand while playing and having exceeded the age limit”. He was 18 years old. However he didn’t give in, and thanks to a grant from the Monte della Pieta in Busseto and further economic assistance from Barezzi he began to frequent the world of La Scala, taking private lessons from the harpsichordist, Vincenzo Lavigna, and attending performances.

Read more about his life here.

Verdi wrote 29 Operas.  Here are a few choice samples from his works.

Grand March - Aida

Click here if the video fails to load.

La donna e mobile - Rigoletto
(The Three Tenors)

Click here if the video fails to load.

Libiamo ne'Lieti Calici - La traviata
(The Three Tenors)

Click here if video fails to load.

Va, pensiro - Nabucco

Click here if the video fails to load.

200 years ago a child was born that would give the world such wonderful music.  Music that will endure until the end of time.

No comments: