Nicola (Antonio) Porpora

Nicola (Antonio) Porpora was born in Naples 17th August, 1686, and died also in Naples 3rd March, 1768.

A celebrated composer and singing teacher, Porpora's ability to set the Italian language to music was internationally acknowledged during his lifetime. He numbered among his students Metastasio, Farinelli, Caffarelli, Antonio Uberti (known as "Porporino"), Regina Mingotti and the composer Franz Joseph Haydn.

In a career that spanned almost seventy years Porpora worked mainly in Naples, Rome, Venice, London, Dresden and Vienna. He was a maestro at three of the Conservatorii in Naples, maestro di coro at the three main Venetian Ospedale, formed an opera company to rival Handel in London, became Ober-Kapellmeister to the Electoress of Saxony and was internationally celebrated.

His output was large, mostly vocal music including more than 40 operas, 12 serenatas, 4 pasticcios, 14 sacred operas or oratorios, around 135 secular cantatas, 40 sacred choral works, 7 masses, 9 solo motets, 13 Marian antiphons as well as various lamentations and duets.

His instrumental output was small, most notably a G major cello concerto, F major cello sonata and his opus 2 Sinfonie da camera (London 1736). Despite his success and international fame during his lifetime, Porpora's life ended in poverty.

For a full detailed biography, see The Porpora Project

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