FRANCESCO BARTOLOMEO CONTI
Dramma per musica in 3 atti.
Libretto: Pietro Metastasio
Balletti by Nicola Matteis Jr.
Full score (A4, paperback, 215 pages)
Introduction by Flavio Ferri-Benedetti
Urtext-Edition by Flavio Ferri-Benedetti
Orchestra: Ob I, II ripieno; Violini I e II, Viola, Bassi; Fagotto Obbligato; Bc.
Francesco Bartolomeo Conti (Florence 1681 - Vienna 1732), theorbist and composer at the Viennese Imperial Court, was the first musician to use this very peculiar libretto by Pietro Metastasio (Rome 1698 - Vienna 1782), the most important librettist of the late baroque / early classical epoque and one of Italy's finest poets. The premiere was performed in 1732 by a fantastic cast of well-known singers in Vienna, i.e. the famous tenor Borghi as King Thoas or the two alto castrati Minelli and Casati, both very appreciated by Italian and Austrian audiences. Musically, the setting written by Conti i very interesting. A relatively high presence of recitativi accompagnati, colourful, highly-melodic arias with, from time to time, very articulated counterpoint.
Interesting, fascinating music that has never been performed again since the 18th century.
Our main source is much probably a unicum - a manuscript present at the Austrian National Museum in Vienna: three tomes decorated with gold, in very precise, clean hand-writing.