Giovan Battista Grazioli

Giovan Battista Ignazio Grazioli (1746 - 1820) was an illustrious citizen of Gargnano, born in Villavetro di Gargnano on 6 July 1746. Little is known about his life before he moved to Venice, with the intention of studying music at a professional level. In Venice Grazioli was the worthy pupil of Ferdinando Bertoni, organist at the musical chapel of S. Marco. On 2 March 1781, Bertoni was granted two years leave, and was replaced by Grazioli. On 28 May 1782, on the death of Domenico Bettoni, the second organist, Grazioli was nominated and engaged in that position. Grazioli remained in this post until 1785, when Baldassarre Galoppi died, and he became first organist. Around 1780 his 12 Sonate per cembalo (sonatas for harpsichord) and 6 Sonate da cembalo con violino obbligato (harpsichord sonatas with obligatory violin) were printed. As well as his harpsichord sonatas, Grazioli left manuscripts of some 400 compositions, almost all of which are preserved in Venice. We know for certain that he wrote for the practical liturgical use of the Chapel; indeed it is difficult to imagine any other destination for his music. Of course, some of his sacred compositions may have been written on commission. 21 Grazioli died of consumption in Venice on 6 February 1820. In the hamlet of Villavetro, the house of the illustrious musician and composer can still be seen today, in the street named after him. A plaque commemorating his birth identifies the house itself. Translated from the writing of Margherita Tomasi and Alberto Iesuè.

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