Domenico Dragonetti

An Italian composer and virtuostic double bass player who spent 50 years of his life in London. By the age of 13 he was the principle bass player at the Opera Buffa in Venice and was described as having tamed the ferocity of his instrument. His bass viol was over-sized with three strings. Dragonetti traveled to London playing at the Haymarket theatre, Vienna where he met Haydn, Beethoven and Sechter and back to England once again. It was reported that he played Beethoven's Cello Sonata with the composer who embraced Dragoni after the set. He also became acquainted with Paganini, Spohr, Hummel, Liszt and Rossini. The compositional retinue of Dragonetti included 30 string quintets with double bass, duets, songs, double bass concertos and double bass pieces for solo instrument and with piano accompaniment. ~ Keith Johnson

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