Saturday, 14 April 2018


“What really counts isn’t whether your instrument is Baroque or modern: It’s your mindset.” - Simon Rattle 

Giuseppe Antonio Paganelli (born March 6, 1710 in Padua, died probably before 1764, possibly in Madrid) was a singer and composer of Italian origin, who worked in various European cities. He was a musical representative of the late Baroque, who composed in the gallant style.

Paganelli came from a wealthy family and received a broad education. It is thought that Giuseppe Tartini was one of his teachers. From 1731/32 he performed with the Accademia dei Dilettanti to the public of his hometown, as the composer of an oratorio and various cantatas. In 1732/33 he composed the two operas, “La Caduta di Leone” and “Tigrane” for the Venetian opera.

From 1733 he worked as a keyboard player for an opera company under Antonio Maria Peruzzi in Augsburg. It is known conclusively that in 1736 he was in in Rheinsberg. During 1737-38 he was appointed as “Chamber Music Master” of the Margravine Wilhelmine of Bayreuth, where his wife Johanna worked as a singer. In the Bayreuth Hofkalendern he is dubbed as “Cammermeister”, and in church records in Erlangen, there is a note that a son of his was baptised, Paganelli referred to as “Cammermusikmeister”.

After 1738 documentary evidence regarding his whereabouts activities is lacking. It is known from secondary sources that Paganelli maintained relations with various German courts without a permanent position, especially in Braunschweig (1737-39), Gotha, Durlach and Munich (1747). However, there were also operas by him staged in Venice (1742/43) and Florence (1746).

From 1756 he is referred to as “Director of Chamber Music of the King of Spain”, and one may assume that he probably lived in Madrid at that time. From the Paris edition of his 30 Duets entitled “Opus the Last”, published by Leloup in 1764, it can be concluded that he had died at that time or shortly before.

Paganelli came from the tradition of Italian Opera Seria. In Germany, he combined Italian, French and German stylistic elements, writing in an elegant, gallant style. His keyboard works remained popular until the beginning of the 19th century. Here is his Opus 1, Six trio sonatas for Baroque Flute (Benedek Csalog), Baroque Violin (Léaszló Paulik), Baroque Cello (Balázs Máté) and Harpsichord (Carmen Leoni).

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