Gioachino Rossini

Italian composer 1792-1868. Born 29 February 1792. Died 13 November 1868
Gioachino Rossini
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1792-02-29
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Gioachino Rossini

Gioachino Rossini Biography (BBC)

The most popular, successful and influential opera composer of the first half of the 19th century, Gioachino Rossini undertook the titanic task of dragging the cumbersome and moribund forms of 18th-century Italian opera into a new era. In the process, it took him just three weeks of 1816 to create in The Barber of Seville one of the all-time masterpieces of comic opera. That was just one of his 38 stage works in all the major contemporary genres.

Unlike that other giant of 19th century Italian opera, Giuseppe Verdi, Rossini chose to take early retirement from the theatrical world – at the age of only 37 – and to devote the remaining 40 years of his life to the other great passion of his life – food. We owe the Tournedos Rossini to his inspiration. The only musical products of his later life were the delightful series of salon pieces which he called Péchés de vieillesse (‘Sins of Old Age’, 1857–68) and two sacred works, the Stabat mater (1841) and his ‘last mortal sin’, the Petite messe solennelle (1863) for two solo voices, two pianos and harmonium.

Born in 1792 in Pesaro, the son of a horn player and a singer, Rossini began to compose as a child, and was commissioned to write his first opera at the age of 15. Further commissions followed; several from the Teatro San Moïse in Venice for a series of one-act farse including The Silken Ladder (1812) and Signor Bruschino (1813). Rossini rarely took more than a month or so to prepare each of his early operas, and between 1810 and 1822 he turned out a steady flow of works, both comic and serious, for production in Venice, Milan, Naples and Rome.

Of these, The Barber of Seville was a disappointing failure at its Rome premiere in 1816, but the following year Rossini bounced back with La Cenerentola (‘Cinderella’), closely followed by La gazza ladra (‘The Thieving Magpie’) for Milan. His greatest opere serie were written for Naples between 1817 and 1822: they included Mosè in Egitto (‘Moses in Egypt’), La donna del lago (‘The Lady of the Lake’), Maometto II and Zelmira. Semiramide, written in 1823, marked the end of Rossini’s Italian career. He was by then so famous that he could no longer resist tempting offers from abroad, and the same year he left for Paris. He had 34 operas to his credit, and was still only 31 years old.

Over the next six years he wrote his final compositions for the Paris stage; they included a revision of Mosè in Egitto as Moïse (1827), Count Ory (1828) and William Tell (1829), his last and arguably finest operatic work. Opera owes to Rossini the evolution of new musical forms in the service of the drama: in particular, the expansion and integration of the function of the chorus; the development of the coloratura aria; the introduction of new subjectmatter to revitalise the stereotypes of opera seria; and the creation of brilliant overtures able to take their place in the concert repertory.

Profile © Wendy Thompson

Gioachino Rossini Biography (Wikipedia)

Gioachino Antonio Rossini ( (listen); 29 February 1792 – 13 November 1868) was an Italian composer who gained fame for his 39 operas, although he also wrote many songs, some chamber music and piano pieces, and some sacred music. He set new standards for both comic and serious opera before retiring from large-scale composition while still in his thirties, at the height of his popularity.

Born in Pesaro to parents who were both musicians (his father a trumpeter, his mother a singer), Rossini began to compose by the age of 12 and was educated at music school in Bologna. His first opera was performed in Venice in 1810 when he was 18 years old. In 1815 he was engaged to write operas and manage theatres in Naples. In the period 1810–1823 he wrote 34 operas for the Italian stage that were performed in Venice, Milan, Ferrara, Naples and elsewhere; this productivity necessitated an almost formulaic approach for some components (such as overtures) and a certain amount of self-borrowing. During this period he produced his most popular works including the comic operas L'italiana in Algeri, Il barbiere di Siviglia (known in English as The Barber of Seville) and La Cenerentola, which brought to a peak the opera buffa tradition he inherited from masters such as Domenico Cimarosa. He also composed opera seria works such as Otello, Tancredi and Semiramide. All of these attracted admiration for their innovation in melody, harmonic and instrumental colour, and dramatic form. In 1824 he was contracted by the Opéra in Paris, for which he produced an opera to celebrate the coronation of Charles X, Il viaggio a Reims (later cannibalised for his first opera in French, Le comte Ory), revisions of two of his Italian operas, Le siège de Corinthe and Moïse, and in 1829 his last opera, Guillaume Tell.

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Gioachino Rossini Performances & Interviews


Gioachino Rossini Tracks

Gioachino Rossini
Overture from La Gazza Ladra (The Thieving Magpie)
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Overture from La Gazza Ladra (The Thieving Magpie)

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Gioachino Rossini
Allegretto "Un rien" (1860)
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Allegretto "Un rien" (1860)
Gioachino Rossini
Allegretto "Del pantelegrafo" (1860)
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Allegretto "Del pantelegrafo" (1860)
Gioachino Rossini
Duetto buffo di due gatti
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Duetto buffo di due gatti
Gioachino Rossini
Introduction and Variations for clarinet and orchestra
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Introduction and Variations for clarinet and orchestra
Gioachino Rossini
Petite messe solennelle for soloists, chorus, 2 pianos and harmonium
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Petite messe solennelle for soloists, chorus, 2 pianos and harmonium
Gioachino Rossini
Adina - opera in one act
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Adina - opera in one act

Adina - opera in one act

Orchestra
Gioachino Rossini Symphony Orchestra
Gioachino Rossini
The Thieving Magpie (Overture)
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The Thieving Magpie (Overture)
Gioachino Rossini
Figaro - concert transcription of 'Largo al factotum' ('Il barbiere di Siviglia)
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Figaro - concert transcription of 'Largo al factotum' ('Il barbiere di Siviglia)
Gioachino Rossini
The Barber of Seville (Largo al factotum)
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The Barber of Seville (Largo al factotum)
Gioachino Rossini
Il Signor Bruschino (Overture)
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Il Signor Bruschino (Overture)
Gioachino Rossini
Duet for Two Cats
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Duet for Two Cats
Gioachino Rossini
Quartet no 1 in F major for flute, clarinet, bassoon and horn
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Quartet no 1 in F major for flute, clarinet, bassoon and horn
Gioachino Rossini
Otello Overture
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Otello Overture
Gioachino Rossini
Prelude, Theme and Variations in E for horn and piano
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Prelude, Theme and Variations in E for horn and piano
Gioachino Rossini
Prelude, theme and variations for horn and piano in E major
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Prelude, theme and variations for horn and piano in E major

Prelude, theme and variations for horn and piano in E major

Performer
Mindaugas Gecevicius
Ala Bendoraitiene
Gioachino Rossini
Quartet for flute, clarinet, horn and bassoon no 6 in F major
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Quartet for flute, clarinet, horn and bassoon no 6 in F major
Gioachino Rossini
La gazza ladra [The Thieving Magpie]: Overture
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La gazza ladra [The Thieving Magpie]: Overture
Gioachino Rossini
La Scala di seta (The silken ladder) Overture
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La Scala di seta (The silken ladder) Overture
Gioachino Rossini
Semiramide (Serbami ognor si fido il cor)
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Semiramide (Serbami ognor si fido il cor)
Gioachino Rossini
Semiramide - opera in 2 acts
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Semiramide - opera in 2 acts
Gioachino Rossini
Aureliano in Palmira (Dolci silvestri orrori)
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Aureliano in Palmira (Dolci silvestri orrori)
Gioachino Rossini
Aureliano in Palmira - opera in 2 acts
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Aureliano in Palmira - opera in 2 acts
Gioachino Rossini
Semiramide - Act 1, Sc 1, Chorus: Belo si celebri
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Semiramide - Act 1, Sc 1, Chorus: Belo si celebri
Gioachino Rossini
Semiramide - Overture
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Semiramide - Overture
Gioachino Rossini
Semiramide (Overture)
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Semiramide (Overture)
Gioachino Rossini
Semiramide: Act 1, Sc. 9 'Serena i vaghi rai - Bel raggio'
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Semiramide: Act 1, Sc. 9 'Serena i vaghi rai - Bel raggio'
Gioachino Rossini
The Barber of Seville, opera after Beaumarchais Act 2
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The Barber of Seville, opera after Beaumarchais Act 2
Gioachino Rossini
The Barber of Seville, opera after Beaumarchais Act 1
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The Barber of Seville, opera after Beaumarchais Act 1
Gioachino Rossini
The Barber of Seville: Cavatina
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The Barber of Seville: Cavatina
Gioachino Rossini
William Tell Overture: Finale
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William Tell Overture: Finale
Gioachino Rossini
Overture to L'Italiana in Algeri (Italian Girl in Algiers)
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Overture to L'Italiana in Algeri (Italian Girl in Algiers)
Gioachino Rossini
Ecco ridente in cielo ('Il barbiere di Siviglia')
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Ecco ridente in cielo ('Il barbiere di Siviglia')

Ecco ridente in cielo ('Il barbiere di Siviglia')

Orchestra
Kitchener Waterloo Symphony Orchestra
Gioachino Rossini
La Cenerentola, ossia La bonta in trionfo i Act 2 sc.3; Non piu mesta (Rondo)
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La Cenerentola, ossia La bonta in trionfo i Act 2 sc.3; Non piu mesta (Rondo)
Gioachino Rossini
Mose in Egitto i Act 2; La pace mia smarrita [Amaltea,Coro]
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Mose in Egitto i Act 2; La pace mia smarrita [Amaltea,Coro]
Gioachino Rossini
La Gazza ladra [The thieving magpie] - opera in 2 acts i Overture
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La Gazza ladra [The thieving magpie] - opera in 2 acts i Overture
Gioachino Rossini
Overture from La Gazza Ladra (The Thieving Magpie)
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Overture from La Gazza Ladra (The Thieving Magpie)
Gioachino Rossini
L'Italiana in Algeri (Overture)
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L'Italiana in Algeri (Overture)
Gioachino Rossini
Il Signor Bruschino (Overture)
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Il Signor Bruschino (Overture)
Gioachino Rossini
Barber of Seville: Largo al factotum
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Barber of Seville: Largo al factotum
Gioachino Rossini
Petite Messe Solennelle: Kyrie
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Petite Messe Solennelle: Kyrie
Gioachino Rossini
Sonata for Wind Quartet no. 6 in F major: II. Tema con Variazione
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Sonata for Wind Quartet no. 6 in F major: II. Tema con Variazione
Gioachino Rossini
Soldier's Dance (William Tell)
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Soldier's Dance (William Tell)
Gioachino Rossini
Concerto for bassoon and orchestra (3rd mvt)
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Concerto for bassoon and orchestra (3rd mvt)
Gioachino Rossini
Largo al Factotum
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Largo al Factotum
Gioachino Rossini
Petite messe solennelle: Cum Sancto Spiritu
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Petite messe solennelle: Cum Sancto Spiritu
Gioachino Rossini
The Italian Girl in Algiers: Overture (arr. for wind ensemble)
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The Italian Girl in Algiers: Overture (arr. for wind ensemble)
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