Nardini, Pietro



Born at Fibiana, in Tuscany; he received his early education in violinplaying in Leghorn. Later became the pupil of the great violinist, Tartini, at Padua. From 1753 to 1767 he was solo violinist at the Court at Stuttgart. During this engagement he made several concert tours, visiting Berlin. He then returned to Italy, for a short time resided in Leghorn, and from there he went to Padua to care for his old master, Tartini, remaining with him until his death, in 1770. After the death of Tartini he accepted the position of director of music at the Court of the Grand Duke Leopold II., of Tuscany, and held this post until his death, in 1793. Leopold Mozart and Schubart both wrote in highest terms of Nardini's playing. From Tartini he learned great tenderness of expression rather than technical skill. His power of moving his audience was remarkable. His compositions show him to have been a thorough musician and are marked by grace and sweet sentimentality, though they lack the depth of feeling and unity of his master. To Nardini is given credit for the development of the sonata in its present form. His compositions include six violin concertos; six sonatas for violin and bass; six flute trios; six violin solos; six string quartets; six violin duets. A number of his sonatas have been edited by Alard and F. David.