Sterling Murray

The Career of an Eighteenth-Century Kapellmeister

The Life and Music of Antonio Rosetti

University of Rochester Press 2014

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Though he never enjoyed the fame of his contemporaries Mozart and Haydn, Antonio Rosetti was a successful composer whose works received a wide audience....

Though he never enjoyed the fame of his contemporaries Mozart and Haydn, Antonio Rosetti was a successful composer whose works received a wide audience. In his book, The Career of an Eighteenth-Century Kapellmeister: The Life and Music of Antonio Rosetti (University of Rochester Press, 2014), Sterling Murray provides readers with both an account of Rosetti’s career and a style study of his compositions. As a young man Rosetti found employment as a double bass player at the southern German court of Kraft Ernst, Prince of Oettingen-Wallerstein. There he began composing a wide range of instrumental music for the court, eventually rising to the position of kapellmeister for the courts Hofkapelle. A sojourn in Paris in 1781-82 enhanced Rosetti’s growing reputation by providing opportunities for publishing his music while exposing him to a wider range of styles, an experience which was soon reflected in his compositions. While financial concerns led to his relocation to the court of Mecklenburg-Schwerin in 1789, his death three years later cut short his career, leaving his achievements subject to the vicissitudes of taste and the changes in musical styles.

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