Ottorino Respighi (Born: July 9, 1879 – Died: April 18, 1936)
Happy Birthday to Ottorino Respighi, the Italian violinist, composer and musicologist, best known for his three orchestral tone poems Fountains of Rome, Pines of Rome, and Roman Festivals.
Respighi was drawn to the poet Gabriele D’Annunzio and most specifically his depiction of Rome. In his celebrated suites—Pini di Roma (Pines of Rome, 1923–24) and Fontane di Roma (Fountains of Rome, 1914–16) he sought to convey the subtlety and colour of the poet’s imagination. Other suites include Vetrate di chiesa (Church Windows, 1927); Gli uccelli (The Birds, 1927); Feste Romane (Roman Festivals, 1929); and Trittico Botticelliano (Botticelli Triptych, 1927, for chamber orchestra).
Respighi was also drawn to old Italian music, which he arranged in three sets of Antique Dances and Arias (transcribed for orchestra from lute pieces). One of his most popular scores was his arrangement of pieces by Rossini, La Boutique fantasque, produced by Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes in London (1919). A later arrangement of Rossini piano pieces, Rossiniana (1925), also became a ballet.