Serrao, Paolo



Italian dramatic and church composer; born at Filadelfia, Calabria. Was a pupil at the Naples Conservatory, of Lanza in piano, and studied there with Parisi and Conti in harmony and with Mercadante in composition. At the outbreak of the Revolution in 1848 Serrao enlisted as a volunteer in the national guard of Naples, and after the defeat of the insurrectionists was obliged to hide for several months before reentering the Conservatory to finish his studies. His first opera, L'Impostore, was written for the Theatre Fondo of Naples in 1852, but political troubles prevented its being produced, and also his second opera. In 1857 he brought out Pergolesi at the Fondo and this was followed in 1865 by La Duchessa and in 1868 by II Figliuol. Serrao also wrote an oratorio; a requiem; funeral symphony; a mass; magnificat; a Te Deum; overture and other works. After 1863 he acted as professor of composition at the Naples Conservatory.