Ferdinando Bertoni


1725 – 1813


Who was Ferdinando Bertoni?

Ferdinando Bertoni was an Italian composer and organist.

He was born in Salò, and began his music studies in Brescia, not far from his birthplace. Around 1740 he went to Bologna, where he studied till 1745 with the famous music theorist Giovanni Battista Martini. Then he moved to Venice, where in 1752 he was appointed as first organist at San Marco. From 1755 to 1777 he was choirmaster at the Ospedale dei Mendicanti, also in Venice. In the period 1778–1783 he was in London, where he composed operas for the King's Theatre. Back to Venice in 1784, he succeeded Baldassare Galuppi in 1785 as Kapellmeister of San Marco and preserved this position until his retirement in 1808. He died in Desenzano del Garda.

A prolific writer of church music, Bertoni also composed 70 operas which fell into oblivion, except Orfeo, based on the same libretto of Ranieri de' Calzabigi of the work of Christoph Willibald Gluck, Orfeo ed Euridice. Bertoni composed this work especially for his friend Gaetano Guadagni, a castrato, who would interpret the role of Orfeo. Bertoni generally ignored Gluck's reforms and composed the work in the old style of opera seria. Bertoni composed at least 200 sacred works and cantatas, instrumental work and chamber music.

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Aug 15, 1725
Also known as
  • Gioseffo Ferdinando Bertoni
  • Bertoni, Ferdinando
  • Italy
Dec 1, 1813

on July 23, 2013


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