Ricci, Federico



Celebrated Italian dramatic composer; younger brother of Luigi Ricci. Born at Naples, and studied at the Conservatory there under Furno, Zingarelli, Raimondi, and Bellini. He Followed Luigi to Rome in 1829, and from that time to the marriage of the elder, the two were almost inseparable. The success of some of their joint works is largely due to the unity resulting from a close similarity of style. The first four works of Federico were those written in this way, namely: II Colonnello; Monsieur Deschalumeaux; II Disertore per amore; and L'Amante di richiama. His first marked success was La prigione d'Edimburgo, produced at Trieste in 1837. In 1853 he went to St. Petersburg as musical director of the Imperial Theatres, and after assuming the duties of this post, laid aside composition for some years, but was inspired to further work in 1866 by the success of Crispino e la Comare, on which he worked jointly with his brother. In 1869 he brought out a French translation of Una follia a Roma, and a reproduction in French of Crispino e la Comare, in the same year, met with such success as to draw him to Paris. In 1872 he had performed, Docteur Rose, and Une fete a Venise, but these failed entirely, and he retired to Corregliano soon after, dying there at the age of sixtysix. In all he composed either alone or jointly with Luigi Ricci, nineteen operas. He also wrote six masses, numerous songs, and several cantatas.