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Tommaso Prota

born: ?1727
died: after 1768
country: Italy

Tommaso Prota (?1727–after 1768) was a member of a large family of musicians embedded at various levels in the local institutions of Naples (he was the son of Ignazio, described in more than one source as an ‘excellent composer, and most excellent teacher’). Like many of his colleagues, the young Tommaso left Naples to seek employment appropriate to his standard of education and his skills in self-promotion: he certainly went to Malta, and may also have worked in London and Paris. The extant documents suggest that he did not live very long, and his known output is indeed small: the highly elegant and well constructed concerto recorded here, three opere buffe (lost), a Salve Regina, a vesper service, a somewhat mediocre oratorio, a Prologo, a cantata, and some other instrumental music (outstanding among which are a concerto and sonata for mandolin and six sonatas for two flutes and continuo). In short, a musician of quality who left his native shores to seek fortune and employment: a common enough destiny, as we have said, but diametrically opposed to the career path, equally common, which was marked out for composers like de Majo.

from notes by Stefano Aresi © 2010
English: Charles Johnston


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