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The Times & Music of German Composer Johann Hasse

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It was Scarlatti who was most impressed with Hasse’ s talents and treated him like a son. During this period, Hasse also composed for a banker two voices for the opera Antony and Cleopatra. The work was so appreciated that it was given to be sung by two of the foremost opera singers of the day, Farinelli and Tesi (Tyrell & Sadie, 2003). The fame of Antony and Cleopatra marked the end of Hasse’ s apprenticeship period. It gave him a chance to be recognized and appreciated by the Neapolitan Court.

He was immediately commissioned to write a composition by the ruler of the Court, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI. This was the start of Hasse’ s career of international fame, which would span the next 60 years (Millner, 1974). Hasse composed seven operas for the Neapolitan Court in the next six years, starting with Sesostrate which was performed at the 9th birthday of the Princess Maria Theresa at the Teatro of San Bartolommeo on 13 May 1726. Tigrane was composed in 1729. By 1730, Hasse’ s fame had spread far beyond Naples and he was invited to Venice to compose an opera there in the Carnival season (Tyrell & Sadie, 2003).

He had now joined the ranks of Scarlatti, Pompora, Leo, and Vinci- some of the best contemporaries of his time. All of them had served apprentices at the Neapolitan Court before coming to Venice. Hasse’ s Artaserse was presented at the S Giovanni Grisotomo Theatre by some of the most famous arias of the time. Hasse also met and married his wife the famous soprano Faustina Bordoni in June 1730. They had by all accounts a happy marriage and produced three children- Maria, Cristina and Francesco Maria (Degrada, 1975).

Hasse and Faustina were subsequently invited to serve at the Dresden Court in Venice. Count Vilo, the Dresden ambassador to Venice was making efforts to revive the opera as the previous one had been disbanded in 1720. The prince in waiting had known Faustina since 1716 when she had sung an opera in his honour on his visit to Venice.

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preview essay on The Times & Music of German Composer Johann Hasse
  • Pages: 7 (1750 words)
  • Document Type: Essay
  • Subject: Music
  • Level: Ph.D.
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