Personalities | Leonardo Vinci | Late Baroque | Opera

c. 1696–1730, Italian

Vinci studied at the Conservatorio dei Poveri di Gesù Cristo in Naples between 1708 and 1718, and afterwards made his operatic debut with Lo cecato fauzo (‘The False Blind Man’, 1719). He proceeded to dominate operatic life in Naples, and his Li zite ’ngalera (‘The Lovers on the Galley’, 1722) is the earliest extant comic opera of its kind. However, after the enormous success of Publio Cornelio Scipione (‘Scipio’, 1722), Vinci turned his attention primarily to opera seria. One of Vinci’s greatest triumphs was Farnace (1724), which initiated a busy period of activity in Rome and Venice. Didone abbandonata (‘Dido Abandoned’ Rome, 1726) and Siroe (Venice, 1726) were both highly acclaimed collaborations with Metastasio. Vinci composed two operas every remaining year of his life, and his partnership with Metastasio produced Alessandro dell’Indie (‘Alexander in India’) and Artaserse (both 1730). Vinci’s music was a great influence on the new generation of composers including Pergolesi and Hasse. Vinci’s work also influenced Handel’s later operas, and the older composer appreciated Vinci’s operas enough to adapt several into pasticcios for London. It was rumoured that Vinci was poisoned as an act of revenge for an illicit love affair.

Introduction | Late Baroque | Opera
Personalities | Antonio Vivaldi | Late Baroque | Opera
Houses & Companies | Baroque Opera in Naples | Early & Middle Baroque | Opera
Techniques | Pasticcio Opera | Classical Era | Opera


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