Giuseppe Torelli, 1658-1709


Selected Recordings

Concerto Grosso “Per il Santissimo Natale”

Sinfonia in A Minor Op. 5 No. 1

Sonate a cinque

Selected Sheet Music

Concerti grossi con una pastorale, Op.8



Showcase Piece

Sonata for trumpet in D major G. 1

Notes and Commentary

Giuseppe Torelli’s 12 concerti of opus 8 “constitute one of the great achievements of the Baroque period. The principal traits that mark the mature concerto are here displayed: the fast-slow-fast sequence of movements, the ritornello form, and the virtuoso flights of the soloists.”—Claude PaliscaBaroque Music

Giuseppe Torelli was an Italian violist, violinist, teacher, and composer. He’s most remembered for his contributions to the development of the instrumental concerto, especially concerti grossi and the solo concerto, for strings and continuo, as well as being a prolific Baroque composer for trumpets. He was born in Verona. He studied composition with Giacomo Antonio Perti, and in 1684, at the age of 26, he became a member of the Accademia Filarmonica as suonatore di violino. By 1698 he was maestro di concerto at the court of Georg Friedrich II. He returned to Bologna sometime before February 1701, when he is listed as a violinist in the newly re-formed cappella musicale at San Petronio, directed by his former composition teacher Perti. He died in Bologna in 1709, where his manuscripts are conserved in the San Petronio archives. Giuseppe’s brother, Felice Torelli, was a Bolognese painter of modest reputation, who went on to be a founding member of the Accademia Clementina. The most notable amongst Giuseppe’s many pupils was Francesco Manfredini. He lived from April 22, 1658, to February 8, 1709.—Excerpted from Wikipedia

Books and Music

Selected Books

The Sonata in the Baroque Era
W. W. Norton and Company, 1972 (3rd ed.)
William S. Newman
$25.55 on Amazon


“Newman takes us through the whole range of composers working in the kinds of compositions called sonatas from the mid-sixteenth century to our own day and it is a list that includes names long forgotten to the world of living music. It is not that it isn’t worth delving into some of these composers, but the hard part is knowing which ones are worthwhile. History has shut the book on most of them for good reason, but there may have been mistakes and something delicious is waiting on the shelf to be discovered. So, look through this book has you wish. I use it more as a reference book than something to read front to back.”—Craig Matteson on Amazon

Selected Music

torelli concertos Concertos (2005), 1 CD

Torelli Brandenburg The Original Brandenburg Concertos (2009), 1 CD

Torelli Sonate Sonate, Sinfonie e Concerti (1994), 1 CD

More Giuseppe Torelli music

Complete Works

10 Sonate a 3, with Basso Continuo, op. 1 (1686).
12 Concerto da camera, for 2 violins and basso continuo, op. 2 (1686).
12 Sinfonie, for 2–4 instruments, op. 3 (1687).
12 Concertino per camera for Violin and Cello, op. 4 (1688).
12 Sinfonie a 3 e concerti a 4, op. 5 (1692).
12 Concerti musicali a quattro, op. 6 (1698).
12 Concerti grossi con una pastorale per il Santissimo Natale, op. 8 (1709).
More than 30 concertos for 1 to 4 trumpets, including a Sinfonia à 4, composed after 1702 (Tarr 1974) and unpublished during his lifetime, which is a concerto for four trumpets, with an orchestra requiring a minimum of four oboes, two bassoons, trombone, timpani, four violins, two violas, four cellos, two double basses, and continuo.—Excerpted from Wikipedia

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