Luigi Boccherini

Biography

Born: 1743   Died: 1805   Country: Italy   Period: Classical
Franz Joseph Haydn may be the father of the string quartet, but Luigi Boccherini might be considered one of its uncles. Born on February 19, 1743, Boccherini was the son of a professional musician who was the first double bassist to perform solo concerts. The elder Boccherini started to give his son cello lessons when the boy was five years old. Luigi continued his studies from the age of nine with Abbé Vanucci, music director of the cathedral at Read more San Martino. When the boy made his first public appearance it was conceded that he had already surpassed his teacher's skills. He was sent to Rome, where he trained with G. B. Costanzi, music director of St. Peter's Basilica. After one year in Rome, Luigi and his father were summoned to Vienna, where they were hired by the Imperial Theater Orchestra.

Boccherini's compositions were first published when he was 17 years old. In 1765 Boccherini and his father went to Milan, which at the time was a magnet for talented musicians. It was there that he wrote his first string quartet. In the same year, the ill health that would plague Boccherini all his life began to take its toll. The composer endured a further blow in 1766 when his father died. He formed a new partnership with the violinist Filippo Manfredi; they toured Italy in 1767 and made their way to Paris, where they became a sensation. In Paris Boccherini published a number of notable works, including a set of six string quartets. Following his successes there, Boccherini began writing and publishing prolifically.

In 1769 Boccherini and Manfredi journeyed to Spain, where the composer enjoyed great acclaim. Boccherini then took up another new genre, the string quintet. He in fact became best known for these works, written for string quartet with an additional cello. Now enjoying the benefits of a steady job, Boccherini married in 1771.

Boccherini's wife died of a stroke in 1785. That year his Spanish patron, Archbishop Don Luis, also died, leaving Boccherini without a position. He petitioned King Charles, asking to be retained in some musical position. Charles granted him a pension and assigned him various musical duties. There was an upturn in Boccherini's fortunes in 1786 when he was commissioned as "Composer of Our Chamber" by Friedrich Wilhelm, who was soon to become King of Prussia. Though he wrote most of his new music for Friedrich Wilhelm, Boccherini remained in Spain, where he wrote his only opera, a zarzuela called La clementina.

In 1787 Boccherini remarried. In 1796 he entered into an arrangement with publisher, composer, and piano manufacturer Ignaz Pleyel, who both praised and published Boccherini's works while cheating him of income. In February 1803, Boccherini was reported as living in "distress," but this is as likely from emotional depression as financial hardship, for in 1802 two of his daughters died from an epidemic within a few days of each other. In 1804 both his wife and his only living daughter died. It seems clear that Boccherini, although he continued to compose up to the end, had little interest in living, and died on May 28, 1805 of what was described as "pulmonary suffocation." He was buried in the Church of San Justo in Madrid. In 1927 his remains were disinterred and he was reburied in the Basilica of San Francesco in his hometown of Lucca. Read less
Anner Bylsma Plays Boccherini
Release Date: 03/25/2014   Label: Sony  
Catalog: 7685192   Number of Discs: 5
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Schubert, Boccherini: String Quintets / Stern, Lin, Laredo, Ma, Robinson
Release Date: 10/14/2014   Label: Sony  
Catalog: 56118   Number of Discs: 1
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Antonio Soler: 13 Sonatas; Luigi Boccherini: Fandango
Release Date: 09/10/2013   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 5906   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Quintet for Strings in E major, Op. 11 no 5/G 275: Minuet

Browse 1-25 of 102 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    The Most Relaxing Classics For Work In The Universe
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 17953 Release Date: 09/03/2013   Number of Discs: 2
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    Label: Aao Music   Catalog: 67032 Release Date: 06/11/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler,  Leos Janácek,  Edvard Grieg,  Luigi Boccherini
    Performer:  Dubravka Tomsic,  Juri Petrov,  Jane Christée Gehringer,  Tonko Ninic
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  • 4.
    The Blue Danube Waltz And Music For Strings / Leopold  Stokowski And His Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 2392 Release Date: 09/11/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Alexander Borodin,  Niccolň Paganini,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
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    Between Two Wars - The Art Of The Comedian Harmonists
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 2 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Vincent Youmans,  Bert Reisfeld,  Erwin Bootz,  Luigi Boccherini  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 6.
    The Most Essential Classical Music In Movies
    Label: X5   Catalog: 111 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Claude Debussy,  Carl Orff,  Pietro Mascagni  ... 
    Performer:  Henrik Mawe,  Jose Perez,  Klemens Schnorr
    Conductor:  Ferdinand Leitner,  David Parry,  Heribert Beissel,  Hanspeter Gmür
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  • 7.
    50 Greatest Pieces Of Classical Music / London Philharmonic Orchestra
    Label: X5 Music Group   Catalog: 105 Release Date: 10/25/2011   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Samuel Barber  ... 
    Performer:  Pieter Schoeman,  Finghin Collins,  Craig Ogden
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 8.
    Classics At The Movies
    Label: Abc Classics   Catalog: 4764553 Release Date: 08/16/2011   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  George Gershwin,  Giacomo Puccini,  Tomaso Albinoni,  Pietro Mascagni  ... 
    Performer:  Isador Goodman,  Yvonne Kenny,  Jane Sheldon,  Lauris Elms  ... 
    Conductor:  Patrick Thomas,  Wlodzimierz Kamirski,  William Motzing,  David Measham  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cantillation,  Tasmanian Symphony Chamber Players
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  • 9.
    Essential Strings
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 94919 Release Date: 07/12/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Pachelbel,  Arcangelo Corelli,  Luigi Boccherini,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
    Performer:  Georges Armand,  Jean-Patrice Brosse,  Maxim Vengerov,  Vag Papian
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  Georges Armand,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Jerzy Maksymiuk  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Virtuosi,  Berlin Philharmonic Cellists
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  • 10.
    Boccherini: String Quintets; Guitar Quintets / Biondi, Europa Galante
    Label: Virgin Classics   Catalog: 96339 Release Date: 05/03/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Luigi Boccherini
    Performer:  Enrico Casazza,  Ernest Braucher,  Maurizio Naddeo,  Fabio Biondi  ... 
    Conductor:  Fabio Biondi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Europa Galante members,  Europa Galante
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  • 11.
    Classical Strings
    Label: Tgg   Catalog: 60214 Release Date: 02/15/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Luigi Boccherini,  Franz Schubert,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Johan Svendsen  ... 
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  • 12.
    Dinner Classics
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 9063 Release Date: 01/25/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Luigi Boccherini,  Anton Rubinstein,  Edvard Grieg,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  Jénö Jandó,  János Bálint,  Deborah Sipkai,  Dénes Várjon  ... 
    Conductor:  Béla Bánfalvi,  Janos Kovács,  Emil Tabakov,  Pavel Urbanek  ... 
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  • 13.
    Sunday Morning With Classical Strings
    Label: Shadow Mountain   Catalog: 5044703 Release Date: 12/28/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Johann Christian Bach,  Franz Schubert,  Luigi Boccherini  ... 
    Conductor:  Richard Hein,  Friedemann Riehle
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  • 14.
    50 Best Baroque
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 57503 Release Date: 06/29/2010   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Jeremiah Clarke,  John Dowland,  Henry Purcell  ... 
    Performer:  Crispian Steele-Perkins,  Gérard Lesne,  Susan Graham,  Christopher Robson  ... 
    Conductor:  Stephen Cleobury,  Richard Hickox,  Andrew Parrott,  Emmanuelle Haďm  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Fretwork,  Taverner Players,  Orlando Gibbons Viol Ensemble  ... 
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  • 15.
    50 Best Romantic Classics
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 57555 Release Date: 06/29/2010   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Jacques Offenbach,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Georges Bizet,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Jessye Norman,  Ann Murray,  Han-Na Chang,  Maria Callas  ... 
    Conductor:  Sylvain Cambreling,  Leonard Slatkin,  Georges Prętre,  Wolfgang Sawallisch  ... 
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  • 16.
    Best Of Comedian Harmonists
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 10021 Release Date: 06/29/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  A. Hoffman,  Peter Igelhoff,  Frank Churchill  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Comedian Harmonists
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  • 17.
    50 Classical Music Favorites
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001388102 Release Date: 06/08/2010   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Luigi Boccherini,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Heinz Holliger,  Italo Colandrea,  Antonio Perez,  Michael Copley  ... 
    Conductor:  Frans Brüggen,  Sir Colin Davis,  Kurt Masur,  Silvio Varviso  ... 
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  • 18.
    Takako Nishizaki Plays Suzuki Evergreens, Vol. 1
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8572378 Release Date: 05/25/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Luigi Boccherini,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Jean-Baptiste Lully,  Ambroise Thomas  ... 
    Performer:  Takako Nishizaki,  Terence Dennis,  Stefan Laux,  Ulf Bastlein  ... 
    Conductor:  Miklós Erdélyi
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  • 19.
    Top 100 Favorite Classical Melodies
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94027 Release Date: 05/04/2010   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Georges Bizet,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Performer:  Sara Crombach,  Vladislaw Warenberg,  Martijn van den Hoek,  Marc Grauwels  ... 
    Conductor:  Bohdan Warchal,  Enrique Bátiz,  Mark Ermler,  Georgi Robev  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Harp Ensemble,  London Baroque,  Musica ad Rhenum  ... 
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  • 20.
    Stokowski Transcriptions - Bach, Wagner, Mussorgsky / Serebrier, Bournemouth SO
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8505086 Release Date: 04/27/2010   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Giovanni Palestrina,  William Byrd  ... 
    Conductor:  José Serebrier
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
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  • 21.
    Encore! / Vladimir Spivakov, Moscow Virtuosi
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 68185 Release Date: 09/14/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Leroy Anderson,  Viktor Poltoratzsky,  Fritz Kreisler,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
    Conductor:  Vladimir Spivakov
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  • 22.
    Palm Court Encores / Ensemble Vivant
    Label: Opening Day   Catalog: 9364 Release Date: 05/04/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Scott Joplin,  Claude Debussy,  Luigi Boccherini,  Jacob Gade  ... 
    Performer:  Catherine Wilson,  Marie Berard,  Dorothy Lawson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Vivant
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  • 23.
    Stokowski: Bach Transcriptions Vol 2 / Serebrier, Bournemouth SO
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8572050 Release Date: 01/27/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Roman Hoffstetter,  Johann Mattheson,  Luigi Boccherini  ... 
    Conductor:  José Serebrier
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
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  • 24.
    The Most Relaxing Classical Music In The Universe - Music For Weddings
    Label: Denon Records   Catalog: 17719 Release Date: 01/13/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  George Frideric Handel,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Otto Büchner,  Peter Schmalfuss,  Renate Modron,  Peter Jancovic  ... 
    Conductor:  Alberto Lizzio,  Hanspeter Gmür,  Oliver Dohnányi,  Bohdan Warchal  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Musici di San Marco,  Munich Bach Soloists,  Slovak Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra  ... 
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  • 25.
    Duel
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 473999 Release Date: 08/26/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sidney Bechet,  Gustav Holst,  Alexander Borodin,  Jacques Offenbach  ... 
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