Personalities | Giovanni Battista Pergolesi | Late Baroque | Classical

(Jo-van’-ne Bat-tes’-ta Pâr-go-la’-ze) 1710–36
Italian composer

Pergolesi studied in Naples with Francesco Durante (1684–1755). He received his first commission in 1731 and the following year was appointed maestro di cappella to the equerry of the Viceroy of Naples. Pergolesi composed comic and serious opera, sacred music and a small quantity of instrumental music. He is chiefly remembered for two works of a disparate character. La serva padrona (‘The Maid as Boss’, 1733) is a comic intermezzo which was performed in Naples as a companion piece to his serious opera Il prigionier superbo (‘The Haughty Prisoner’, 1733). Lively plot, credibly drawn characters and engaging music made them popular dramatic entertainments. The Stabat Mater for soprano, mezzo-soprano and strings was among Pergolesi’s last compositions; its style approaches the idiom of contemporary Italian opera.

Recommended Recording:
La serva padrona, Livietta e Tracollo, soloists, La Petite Bande (dir) Sigiswald Kuijken (Accent)

Introduction | Late Baroque | Classical
Personalities | Johann Joachim Quantz | Late Baroque | Classical


An extensive music information resource, bringing together the talents and expertise of a wide range of editors and musicologists, including Stanley Sadie, Charles Wilson, Paul Du Noyer, Tony Byworth, Bob Allen, Howard Mandel, Cliff Douse, William Schafer, John Wilson...


Classical, Rock, Blues, Jazz, Country and more. Flame Tree has been making encyclopaedias and guides about music for over 20 years. Now Flame Tree Pro brings together a huge canon of carefully curated information on genres, styles, artists and instruments. It's a perfect tool for study, and entertaining too, a great companion to our music books.

Rock, A Life Story

Rock, A Life Story

The ultimate story of a life of rock music, from the 1950s to the present day.

David Bowie

David Bowie

Fantastic new, unofficial biography covers his life, music, art and movies, with a sweep of incredible photographs.