Perez, Davide



Operatic and church composer; native of Naples, but of Spanish blood. He went to the Santa Maria di Loreto Conservatory, studied the violin with Antonio Gallo, and counterpoint with Francesco Neancini, and in 1739 was appointed chapelmaster of the Palermo Cathedral, where he remained until 1748. His first opera, Siroe, was followed by L'amore; L'Eroismo di Scipione; Astartea; Medea; and L'Isola incantata; La Clemenzo di Tito; Semiramide; and a number of others written for different Italian theatres. He was called to Lisbon in 1752, where the King made him Royal chapelmaster. After securing the best singers of Italy he opened the new Lisbon Theatre in 1 55 with a magnificent performance of his Alessandro nelle Indie, and the same year produced his Ezio in London, but the remainder of his life was spent at Lisbon, where, despite blindness and sickness, he dictated works to his amanuensis. He composed considerable excellent church-music, masses, motets and psalms, his Mattutini de* Morte being considered his best sacred work. His operas were about thirty in number.