Tommaso Traetta [Trajetta], (Michele Francesco Saverio)

(1727 - 1779)

Tommaso Traetta

Italian composer. He studied at the Conservatorio di S. Maria di Loreto, Naples, with Porpora and Durante (1738-48). His first opera, Il Tarnace,was performed at S. Carlo, Naples, on November 4, 1751. In the early 1750s he worked with Jommelli in Naples and Rome. In 1758 he became maestro di cappellato the court of Parma, where his Ippolito ed Aricia(1759), inspired by Rameau's Hippolyte et Aricie,was produced. From 1760 to 1763 he wrote operas for Turin, Vienna, and Mannheim. Great success came with Ifigenia in Tauride(Vienna, 1763), which was indebted to Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice.In 1765 he became director of the Conservatorio del l'Ospedaletto at Venice; there he wrote sacred vocal works. In 1768 he was employed by Catherine II of Russia in St. Petersburg as singing instructor and musical director of the opera. There his greatest opera, Antigone,was performed in 1772. After a short time in London, he settled permanently in Venice by 1777. In addition to over forty operas, Traetta wrote a number of other sacred and secular vocal works.

VIIIB: The Neapolitan Group