Domenico Gabrielli

(b Bologna, Oct 19, 1659; d Bologna, July 10, 1690). Italian composer and cello virtuoso. The first part of his nickname (‘Mingéin dal viulunzèl’ in Bolognese dialect) is a diminutive of ‘Domenico’. He studied composition with Legrenzi in Venice; he was also one of the best students of Franceschini in Bologna, where on 20 December 1680, after Franceschini’s death, he succeeded him as a cellist at S Petronio. He was elected to the Accademia Filarmonica on 23 April 1676 and became president in 1683. During the 1680s he became widely recognized as a cello virtuoso and composer of vocal music. He turned to the composition of operas in 1683 and in seven years wrote 12, which received their premières in Venice, Modena and Turin as well as in Bologna. This undoubtedly caused him to travel a good deal, and because of his prowess on the cello he also often performed at the Este court at Modena. He was granted frequent leave of absence from S Petronio, but it is no surprise that he was dismissed on 14 October 1687 for neglect of his duties: he failed to play on the feast of St Petronius, the most important function of the year. He immediately went to Modena for a short time, where he entered the regular service of Duke Francesco II d’Este. His prestige, however, was such that he was reinstated at S Petronio on 23 March 1688, but he soon contracted the incurable illness that led to his death.

From Domenico Gabrielli on Oxford Music Online