Giulio Ricordi (1840-1912)
A man and his music, a hundred years later. Bewitching, prescient notes, sometimes suspended, sometimes vehement and combative, full of echoes yet original, worldly and dreamy, “garden of delights” for their author, who is caught in the manifold daily maelstroms of a rapidly growing city, Milan. Precisely a century separates us from the death of Giulio Ricordi, the most gifted musical publisher of all time, who was born in 1840 during the Risorgimento and died on 6 June 1912 when the Belle Époque was ending; who plunged into the Scapigliatura, came close to Wagnerism, worshipped Verdi and was fascinated by young Puccini. And a musician. Actually, in Verdi’s opinion, he was “the only one among the young people to be really well-versed in music”. During the last decades of his life, almost every evening, Giulio shed his role of “important person”, sat down at the piano and composed, using music almost as a therapy, as a sort of receptacle for emptying out his brain, where notes by various composers lingered and eventually agglomerated almost by themselves, as in a kaleidoscope, creating delightful new patterns.