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Ottorino Respighi (1879-1936)
The Italian composer Ottorino Respighi studied music in his native Bologna and later, briefly, with Rimsky-Korsakov in St. Petersburg. A viola-player and pianist, as well as a composer, he settled in Rome in 1913, earning a reputation also for his interest in early music and for his work as a teacher.
Respighi is chiefly known for his vivid symphonic poems, in particular Fontane di Roma (Fountains of Rome), Pini di Roma (Pines of Rome), and Feste romane (Roman Festivals), the last even more a celebration of the revived spirit of nationalism in the Italy of his time. Concertos for violin and for piano occupy a lesser position in general repertoire. Other orchestral compositions include Trittico botticelliano (Triptych after Botticelli) and music from his opera Belfagor.
Respighi's La boutique fantasque, based on Rossini, is well known to ballet audiences. Other orchestral arrangements include three sets of orchestrated Antiche arie e danze per liuto (Ancient Airs and Dance for Lute) and Gli uccelli (The Birds), based on compositions by Rameau, Pasquini and others.