Pugnani, Gaetano



Famous Italian violinist, teacher and composer. Born and died at Turin. He studied first under Somis, a distinguished pupil of Corelli, and later, at Padua, under the great Tartini, combining the two styles to form the broad, sweeping method and agile bowing, which he transmitted to his most famous pupil, Viotti. In 1752 he was appointed leader of the Court Orchestra at Turin and director of the King's concerts. In 1754 he began his travels; played at the Concerts Spirituels in Paris; led the orchestra of the Italian Opera at London, and appeared with great success in most of the European countries. He returned to Turin in 1770 and there he spent the rest of his life conducting the Court Theatre and teaching. He had a wonderful gift for conducting and imparted this to his pupils. Among his works are a dramatic cantata, Issea; L'Aurora, a cantata; the operas, Demetrio a Rodi, Tamas Koulikan, Adone e Venere, Nanetta e Lubiono; an opera buffa, Achilla in Sciro; and the ballet, Coreso e Calliroe; besides a great quantity of instrumental music, some overtures, and twelve symphonies.