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His father was an engineer from Lerino, a village near Torri di Quartesolo in the Veneto region of Italy. His mother was a Roman noblewoman who had married a wealthy land owner, Count Bernardo Genardini, at the age of She met Luigi Gastaldon in when she was 23 and shortly thereafter abandoned her husband and four children to live with him. Part of his childhood was spent in San Vito Chietino in the Abruzzo region, where a street is now named for him and where his younger brother Guglielmo was born in Music from the ballet arranged as a military march became the official fanfare of the 12th Regiment of the Bersaglieri corps, which had been based in Turin.
Its success would also provide an entry to the most important salons in Italy, where many of his early songs were first performed. His musical fame preceded him when Gastaldon did his obligatory year of military service in He was assigned to be one of the "professors" of the 24th Infantry Regiment band.
Over the next four years he continued composing songs and short pieces of instrumental music and started work on his first opera, Fatma. However, in , when the music publisher Sonzogno announced a competition for one-act operas, Gastaldon decided to enter with Mala Pasqua! He expanded the opera to three acts, and Mala Pasqua! Nevertheless, he continued writing operas over the years, producing two one-act operas, Pater and Stellina and a three-act comic opera, Il Reuccio di Caprilana Like Mala Pasqua!
Gastaldon and his friends were out of sympathy with the rise of Italian Fascism in the s, and he became increasingly marginalised. He never married and lived alone in his house on Via Montanara. On March 6, , Gastaldon suffered a heart attack while walking across the Piazza Vittorio Emmauele and died the same day at the age of He is buried in the Misericordia di Antella Cemetery near Florence.
Although several biographical entries, including that in Enciclopedia della musica published by Rizzoli-Ricordi, say that he composed more than songs, Scaccetti suggests that while Gastaldon was prolific, the actual number may be considerably less than this. The work he is almost exclusively remembered for today is his song "Musica proibita". A young woman tells of a handsome young man "un bel garzone" who sings a love song beneath her balcony every night.
She longs to sing it herself to re-live the thrill she felt, but her mother has forbidden her. Knowing that her mother has left the house, she sings it, and then recalling the last time she heard him, she sings it again even more intensely.
I want to kiss your raven hair, Your lips and your solemn eyes It was published as a salon song for solo soprano and piano in , nine years before Mala Pasqua!
The Mala Pasqua! Ten years later, a journalist writing in the Gazzetta musicale di Milano recalled how the song soon became a way for timid young lovers all over Italy to express their affection in words that were both uninhibited and emotionally moving.
He went on: What an invasion, what an inundation, how deafening it was back then! It has since been arranged for every voice type as well as transcribed for flute and violin, violin solo, piano solo, guitar, mandolin , accordion , military band, and solo voice and orchestra. It was recorded in several different versions on early gramophone and cylinder recordings starting in , and although the words express the thoughts of a young girl, "Musica proibita" became a staple of the tenor concert repertoire sometimes with the text adjusted.
Like "Musica probita", the text was by "Flick-Flock". It had considerable success in its day and was recorded in by the Italian baritone Taurino Parvis for Columbia Records. In , after the premiere of Mala Pasqua! Initially called Rosa Minchon and then Mazzarinata, it too was never performed and was probably never finished.
According to the Revue Musicale de Lyon, it had little success despite the talent of Giuseppe Taccani , who sang the piece at its premiere. In a profile of the minor Italian literary figure, Fausto Villa, published in La nuova fioritura to publicize his first novel, it was claimed that he had authored the words to "Musica probita". However, Scaccetti discounts this as does Rubboli March pp.
Reynolds also has the date of the Mala Pasqua! Corriere, Gazetta musicale di Milano, July quoted in Scaccetti p. Retrieved See also Scaccetti p.
Volume 54, Issues , p. I film , Volume 1. Gremese Editore, pp.
Musica Proibita, Op.5 (Gastaldon, Stanislao)