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Dusting Off Martini’s Gavotte

This past Monday marked the birthday of Giovanni Battista Martini (1706-1784). The Italian composer and Conventual Franciscan Friar is now a mere footnote in the dusty pages of music history. But within the musical circles of eighteenth century Bologna, Martini was a respected figure. At the age of 19, he was appointed chapel-master of Bologna’s Basilica San Francesco (pictured above). He was a renowned teacher whose students included the young Mozart, J.C Bach, and Christoph Gluck.

Martini’s compositional output includes sacred music (Missa solemnisRequiem) and a host of instrumental works. A transcription of this charmingly tuneful Gavotte from Martini’s Harpsichord Sonata No. 12 opens Book 3 of the Suzuki Violin repertoire. Here is Susanna Piolanti’s recording of the original:


  • Martini: Sonate d’intavolatura per l’organo & il cembalo, Susanna Piolanti iTunes
  • Martini recordings on iTunes


2 Responses to Dusting Off Martini’s Gavotte

  1. Celine L. April 28, 2017 at 7:46 pm #

    That is very familiar to me right now and I really enjoyed it! I am re-learning the violin (without a teacher) after 40+ years away, and am currently working on this Suzuki gavotte. The harpsichord version sounds better, but I’m really enjoying the challenge of getting back into playing.

    • Timothy Judd April 28, 2017 at 7:52 pm #

      Thank you for your comment, Celine. I’m glad you enjoyed hearing this original version. Best of luck in your violin studies!

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