Attilio Ariosti

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Attilio Ariosti

Attilio Ariosti (born November 5, 1666 in Bologna , † August 1729 in London ) was an Italian composer .


Attilio Ariosti, who came from an illegitimate branch of the Bolognese aristocratic family Ariosti, received singing, violin, organ and composition lessons from unknown teachers. He entered the monastery of the Order of the Servites in Bologna in 1688 , where he made his public vows on July 28, 1689. In May 1692 he was ordained a deacon and in the same year the position of organist at S. Maria dei Servi, the church of his order. By composing his first oratorios ( La passione 1693 in Modena and S. Radegonda reina di Francia 1694, Bologna) he made his first contact with the world of theater.

His first opera Tirsi was performed in Venice in 1697 . From 1697 to 1703 he was released from Duke Ferdinando Carlo IV. Gonzaga of Mantua to work as court composer at the court of Sophie Charlottes , in Lietzenburg near Berlin. Here he composed the operas La fede ne tradimenti , L'inganno, vinto della costanza and Mars and Irene . He also wrote various arias, cantatas and chamber concerts at court. In 1703 he had to leave the Lietzenburg because of a violent dispute with the Oberhofkapellmeister. After that he was employed briefly at the court of Anjou . Between 1703 and 1709 he was the Austrian general agent for Italy in the service of Emperor Joseph I.

After 1715 he celebrated great successes in Paris and London, which were only trumped by George Frideric Handel . He was with Handel and Bononcini a member of the Royal Academy of Music , whose task it was to provide the London aristocracy with Italian operas. The importance of Ariosti is emphasized by the statement made by Jean-Philippe Rameau in 1737 regarding a passage from the opera Coriolano , which he saw as an outstanding example of enharmonic composition. The viola d'amore became his preferred instrument, which he played on July 12, 1716 between the acts of Handel's Amadigi di Gaula performance in London.

His younger brother Giovanni Battista Ariosti (* 1668) was also a member of the Servite Order and a music teacher, he left behind a textbook printed in 1686, Modo facile di suonare il sistro for a kind of carillon.


Ariosti wrote around 25 operas, whose models were initially the operas of Jean-Baptiste Lully and later the operas of Alessandro Scarlatti .

  • Ballet music
    • La Festa del Hymeneo , libretto by Ortensio Mauro (Berlin 1700)
  • Oratorios
    • La Passione , libretto by Cam. Arnoldi ( Modena 1693, Vienna 1694)
    • Radegonde (Santa Rodegonda), regina di Francia , libretto by Giambattista Taroni (Bologna 1694)
    • Le profezie di Eliseo nell'assedio di Samaria , libretto by Giambattista Neri (Bologna 1704)
    • La madre de Maccabei (Vienna 1704)
    • Nabucodonosor , libretto by Pietro Antonio Bernardoni (Bologna 1706)
  • Instrumental music
    • Divertimenti da Camera for violin and violoncello (1695, Bologna)
    • 57 movements for viola d'amore, published under the title “Recueil de Pièces pour la Viol d'Amour” . The only existing source is a copy by the Swedish composer Johan Helmich Roman , who studied in London from 1716 to 1721, i.e. at the time when Ariosti was there. The copy is now in the Royal Music Library in Stockholm .


  • Beatrice Barazzoni: Le cantate da camera di Attilio Ariosti (1666–1729) nel contesto coevo. Con l'edizione dei testi. Aracne, Rome 2007, ISBN 978-88-548-1385-4 .

Web links

Commons : Attilio Ariosti  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. General Directorate of the Prussian Palaces and Gardens Foundation Berlin-Brandenburg (ed.): Sophie Charlotte and her castle. A baroque muse court in Brandenburg-Prussia. Prestel, Munich et al. 1999, ISBN 3-7913-2225-7 , p. 248 ff.