Foundazione Antonino Reggio is dedicated the research into the Life, Times and Works of the 18th century Sicilian Prelate, harpsichordist, violoncello player and composer Monsignor Antonino Reggio.
Monsignor Reggio was first mentioned in 1770 by the English musician and writer Dr Charles Burney who described him as a 'a pretty good composer and performer on the harpsichord and violoncello’. He also mentions Reggio had ‘2 or 3 delicate-toned harpsichords and a good library’. Reggio is also as possessing ‘the best Italian harpsichord for tone’ that Burney had heard in his travels. In his summing up on his visit to Rome, Burney describes Reggio as ‘eminent for [his] skill in the art, and learning in the science of sound’.
Later his prowess as a musician is described by the writer and poet, Giovanni Gherado De Rossi, as ‘a man of great intellect, erudite, and very deep in music.’
No information regarding Monsignor Reggio is recorded in any standard musicological source. Given that Dr. Burney considered him ‘a pretty good composer’, my research next focused on the possibility of his works being extant.
Although there is no direct reference to Reggio there is an oblique reference to an 18th century composer, A. Reggio, mentioned in an article in MGG. The author discusses the style of oratorios by Alessandro Scarlatti and Rinaldo da Capua and concludes that these are Intermezzi Sacra. He mentions that the same style was being used later in the century in works by the ‘Neapolitaner,’ A. Reggio. The Author of the article was Rudolf Ewerhart. Ewerhart was one of the major scholars to study the manuscripts in the Santini collection in the Bisch÷fliche Bibliotek (now the Di÷zensanbibliothek) in MŘnster. This led to the discovery 16 manuscripts in Santini Collection of the Di÷zensanbibliothek. It is fortunate that many of these manuscripts contain dates, places and names of dedicatees so the following work is based upon on these annotations.
Issue 2 14/01/11