Davide Perez (1711–1778), a year younger than the more famous Pergolesi, is one of the most significant representatives of the generation of composers active in Naples after the internationalization of the innovations introduced by Vinci and Porpora. The theatrical impresario Angelo Carasale bracketed Perez and Pergolesi together as ‘two fine virtuosi of this city’, although it must be acknowledged that Perez enjoyed the greater immediate success: at a very early age he gained admittance to important circles of patronage in both Naples and Palermo, and he made his debut as an opera composer at the royal palace, in 1735, on the occasion of the celebrations of King Charles’s birthday. Pergolesi died the following year and at once became a legend (thanks largely to his published cantatas, the Stabat mater
, and the extraordinary fortune of his intermezzo La serva padrona
), while Perez, although pursuing a prosperous career that eventually saw him appointed as court composer in Portugal, was soon forgotten after his death.
from notes by Stefano Aresi © 2013
English: Charles Johnston