Francesco Zappa

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Francesco Zappa (born in Milan, creative period 1763–1788) was an Italian cellist and composer. He is known for his virtuoso cello playing.


Little is known about Zappa's life: what information is available comes largely from his own publications and manuscripts.Zappa was first employed by the Sicilian Count Catani, to whom he dedicated his first work, 6 Trio sonatas. He worked for the Duke of York, giving him music lessons during the Duke's stay in Italy, from November 1763 to the middle of 1764. When the Duke died in 1767, Zappa held the rank of maestro di musica (Kapellmeister), as the title page of his Trio sonatas Opus 2 records.

In 1771 he played a series of concerts in Germany, visiting the Polish city of Gdańsk and, on 22 September, Frankfurt am Main. According to Mendel (1879), he undertook another tour of Germany in 1781, and with "his gentle and beautiful sound" inspired wonder in all who listened.

By the end of the 1780s Zappa was employed as master of music in The Hague (Maître de musique à la Haye), and this is noted in the 1788 manuscript of his Quartetto concertante.

Musical Output

Zappa composed symphonies, trio, sonatas, divertimenti and songs, but nothing more of his output has been transmitted. <!-- In seinen Kompositionen bevorzugt er nach Köhler (1968) das Violoncello, dem er „dankbare Aufgaben“ zuweist.

Sein Werk wird von Salvetti/Walden (2001) als lyrisch bezeichnet, sein Stil tendiere zu einer „...ernsten Weise bei der...
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