Tebaldini, Giovanni

views updated

Tebaldini, Giovanni

Tebaldini, Giovanni, Italian conductor, music scholar, and composer; b. Brescia, Sept. 7, 1864; d. San Benedetto del Tronto, May 11, 1952. He studied with Ponchielli, Panzini, and Amelli at the Milan Cons. (1883-85) and with Haller and Haberl at the Regensburg School for Church Music (1888). He served as maestro of the Schola Cantorum at San Marco in Venice (1889-93), maestro di cappella at the Basilica of S. Antonio in Padua (1894-97), and director of the Parma Cons. (1897-1902). After teaching at the Cons, di San Pietro a Majella in Naples (1925-30), he went to Genoa, where he was appointed director of the Ateneo Musicale (1931). His specialty was Italian sacred music, but he gained sensational prominence when he publ. an article provocatively entitled ’Telepatia musicale” (Rivista Musicale Italiana, March 1909), in which he cited thematic similarities between the opera Cassandra (1905) by the relatively obscure Italian composer Vittorio Gnecchi and Elektra by Richard Strauss, written considerably later, implying a “telepathic” plagiarism on the part of Strauss. However, the juxtaposition of musical examples from both operas proved specious and failed to support Tebaldini’s contention.


La musica sacra in Italia (Milan, 1894); Gasparo Spontini (Recanati, 1924); Ildebrando Pizzetti (Parma, 1931).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire