Giuseppe Maria Cambini


Italian composer, immensely popular with Parisian audiences in the 1770s and 1780s. He was know to have been playing viola in 1767 in a quartet that included some of the most illustrious musicians of the day, Pietro Nardini and Filippo Manfredi (violins) and Luigi Boccherini (cello). He arrived in Paris in 1770 and was taken up by François-Joseph Gossec, director of the Concerts des Amateurs, and had works played at the Concerts Spirituelunder Le Gros.

He made his publishing debut with a set of quartets (the Sei quartetti op. 1, published in 1773), but realized very early on that success with the Parisian public depended on the symphonie concertante. Thus in February 1776 an announcement appeared in the Mercure de France to the effect that, beginning in March, Madame Bérault intended to print twenty of his symphonies concertantes at intervals of one a month; he was ultimately to produce nearly eighty in the course of two decades.

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