Giacomo Gotifredo Ferrari (1763–1842)
Trios and Sonatas
Giacomo Gotifredo Ferrari was an Italian composer and theoretician. He was the son of a wealthy cloth merchant of Rovereto who at first had destined him for carrying on the family business; but since a very early age he showed a great talent and facility for music. Before he turned twenty he had already learnt to play the oboe, the flute, the violin, the viola, and the contrabass. After his father’s death in 1784, Ferrari decided to pursue a musician’s career, and from that time onwards his life was spent travelling a great deal and staying in the major European courts. He followed the Prince of Lichtenstein to Rome and subsequently to Naples, where he became friends with Giovanni Paisiello. The outbreak of the French Revolution forced him to leave Paris (where he lived since 1787) more and more frequently, until in 1792 he relocated once and for all to London. There, at court, he had the chance to meet some great artistic personalities such as Haydn, Clementi, Dussek. Ferrari became a deep connoisseur and lover of Mozart’s works, so much so that he took on a strictly conservative attitude and refused to adapt to the process of evolution of music that was taking place, by then irreversibly, between the end of the eighteenth century and the first years of the nineteenth. In spite of his admiration for Mozart, Ferrari never gave way to the temptation of becoming an epigone of his, and always preserved a certain degree of stylistic originality. The two collections of sonatas presented in this programme, both probably published within 1795, are among the best examples of this kind..