Domenico Alberti

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Domenico Alberti (* around 1710 in Venice , † October 14, 1746 in Rome ) was an Italian singer and composer of the late Baroque. The Alberti bass was named after him.

Live and act

Example Alberti bass, in Mozart's piano sonata KV 545

Domenico Alberti studied under Antonio Lotti . He wrote several serenatas based on libretti by Pietro Metastasio (including Endimione ), several arias and around 36 sonatas for harpsichord, 14 of which have survived. In his sonatas he mostly used the Alberti bass named after him, a repetition of arpeggios in which the individual notes of the chords do not sound simultaneously, but one after the other in the order “lowest, highest, middle, highest tone”.

Nowadays Alberti is classified as relatively insignificant and he owes his fame not to his rarely played works, but to the Alberti bass, which has been picked up by many composers and has become an important element of classical music.

During his lifetime, Domenico Alberti was best known as a singer and often accompanied himself on the harpsichord . He was serving in the Venetian embassy in Rome in 1737 when he impressed the famous castrato Farinelli with his singing, even though he was an amateur.


Instrumental music

  • Op. 1: 8 Sonates pour le Clavecin composées par Mr Jozzi, Elève d'Alberti (Amsterdam, 1747; London, 1761) published as a plagiarism by Giuseppe Jozzi . With correct attribution: 8 sonata per harpsichord (Paris)
  • some works in A collection of Lessons for the Harpsichord, compos'd by Sig.r Jozzi , St. Martini of Milan , Alberti, Agreli . Never before printed (three books, London, 1761–1764)
  • some works in The Harpsichord Miscellany. Book second. Composed by Alberti, Pasquali and Tardini (London, 1763)
  • 3 Sonata in 20 Sonata per harpsichord, composte di vari Autori (Paris, around 1770)
  • 21 Sonate di Intavolatura (manuscript)
  • Sonata and Toccate in manuscripts

Vocal music

  • Serenata Endimione (Libretto: Pietro Metastasio ) (Venice, 1737)
  • La Galatea (Libretto: Pietro Metastasio) (Venice, 1737 or 1738, performed 1740)
  • Un'Olimpiade (Venice, 1737 or 1739) (attribution uncertain)
  • Temistocle
  • Aria Vedrai che a te costante
  • Aria Allo splendor fugace
  • Aria Se in qualche volto
  • Aria Se per me non c'è speranza
  • Aria Caro sposo, amato oggetto
  • Motet Adoramus te Christe for four voices


  • Wilibald Gurlitt , Carl Dahlhaus (ed.): Riemann Music Lexicon. In three volumes and two supplementary volumes. Alberti, Domenico. 12th completely revised edition. 1. Personal section A – KB Schotts-Söhne, Mainz 1959, p. 19-20 (first edition: 1882).
  • Wilibald Gurlitt, Carl Dahlhaus (ed.): Riemann Music Lexicon. In three volumes and two supplementary volumes. Alberti, Domenico. 12th completely revised edition. 4. Personal section A – KB Schotts-Söhne, Mainz 1972, p. 11 (first edition: 1882).
  • Wolfgang Ruf:  Alberti, Domenico. In: Ludwig Finscher (Hrsg.): The music in past and present . Second edition, personal section, volume 1 (Aagard - Baez). Bärenreiter / Metzler, Kassel et al. 1999, ISBN 3-7618-1111-X  ( online edition , subscription required for full access)
  • Guido Piamonte:  Alberti, Domenico. In: Alberto M. Ghisalberti (Ed.): Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani (DBI). Volume 1:  Aaron – Albertucci. Istituto della Enciclopedia Italiana, Rome 1960.
  • Gero von Wilpert : Goethe-Lexikon (= Kröner's pocket edition . Volume 407). Kröner, Stuttgart 1998, ISBN 3-520-40701-9 , p. 13 (first entry).
  • Wilhelm Wörmann: Domenico Alberti's piano sonata in Acta Musicologica Vol. 27/1955, pp. 84–112

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b c Clive Unger-Hamilton, Neil Fairbairn, Derek Walters; German arrangement: Christian Barth, Holger Fliessbach, Horst Leuchtmann, et al .: The music - 1000 years of illustrated music history . Unipart-Verlag, Stuttgart 1983, ISBN 3-8122-0132-1 , p. 82 .