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Gassmann Florian Leopold

Gassmann Florian Leopold

Gassmann, Florian Leopold, important Bohemian composer; b. Brux, May 3, 1729; d. Vienna, Jan. 20, 1774. He studied voice, violin, and harp with Johann Woborschil (Jan Voboril), the regens chori in Brux; his father opposed his interest in music, so he ran away from home, eventually making his way to Italy, where he may have studied with Padre Martini in Bologna. His first opera, Merope, was given in Venice in 1757. After serving Count Leonardo Veneri there, he was invited to Vienna to become ballet composer at the court in 1763. He soon established himself as an opera composer, gaining fame with his comic operas L’amore artigiano (Vienna, April 26, 1767) and La Contessina (MahrischNeustadt, Sept. 3, 1770). In 1772 he was appointed court composer and also founded and served as 1st vice-president of the Tonkunstler-Sozietat, a benevolent society for musicians. In addition to his operas, he distinguished himself as an accomplished symphonist. He was highly esteemed by Mozart, Gerber, Burney, and Salieri, the last having been his student in Vienna. His 2 daughters, Maria Anna Fux (b. Vienna, 1771; d. there, Aug. 27, 1852) and (Maria) Therese Rosenbaum (b. Vienna, April 1, 1774; d. there, Sept. 8, 1837), were pupils of Salieri; both were active as singers.


DRAMATIC Opera : Merope (Venice, Carnival 1757; only the overture and Act 1 extant); Issipile (Venice, Carnival 1758); Gli Uccellatori, dramma giocoso (Venice, Carnival 1759); Filosofia ed amore, dramma giocoso (Venice, Carnival 1760); Catone in Utica (Venice, 1761; only 1 aria extant); Un Pazzo nefa cento, dramma giocoso (Venice, 1762); L’Olimpiade (Vienna, Oct. 18, 1764); II trionfo d’amore, azione teatrale (Vienna, Jan. 25, 1765); Achille in Sciro (Venice, 1766); // Viaggiatore ridicolo, dramma giocoso (Vienna, May 25, 1766); L’amore artigiano, dramma giocoso (Vienna, April 26, 1767); Amore e Psiche (Vienna, Oct. 5, 1767); La notte critica, dramma giocoso (Vienna, Jan. 5, 1768); L’opera seria, commedia per musica (Vienna, 1769); Ezio (Rome, Carnival 1770); La Contessina, drama giocoso (Mahrisch-Neustadt, Sept. 3, 1770; ed. in Denkmaler der Tonkunst in Osterreich, XLII-XLIV, Jg. XXI/1, 1914); II Filosofo inamorato, dramma giocoso (Vienna, 1771); Le Pescatrici, dramma giocoso (Vienna, 1771); Don Quischott von Mancia, comedy (Vienna, 1771; Acts 1 and 2 by Paisiello, Act 3 by Gassmann); I rovinati, comedy (Vienna, June 23, 1772); La casa di campagna, dramma giocoso (Vienna, Feb. 23, 1773). VOCAL: S a c r e d : La Betulia liberata, oratorio (Vienna, March 29, 1772); masses; motets; offertories; graduals; hymns; etc. I n s t r u m e n t a l : About 60 syms. (1 ed. by K. Geiringer, Vienna, 1933; 1 ed. by L. Somfai in Musica Rinata, XVIII, 1970); 27 opera overtures; Flute Concerto; 37 string quartets; 8 string quintets; 10 wind quintets; 37 wind trios; 7 string duos; etc.


F. Kosch, F. L. G. als Kirchenkomponist (diss., Univ. of Vienna, 1924); E. Leuchter, Die Kammermusik F. L. G.s (diss., Univ. of Vienna, 1926); E. Girach, F. L. G. (Reichenberg, 1930); G. Hill, The Concert Symphonies ofF. L. G. (1729–1774) (diss., N.Y.U., 1975); idem, A Thematic Catalog of the Instrumental Music ofF. L.G. (Hackensack, N.J., 1976).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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