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The Italian judgement
MILAN, Augustinian Convent of San Marco. 1769
I would travel to Italy three times with my father.
During those stays, I played and listened to music
in countless cities, becoming 'Volgango Amadeo' for everyone! In Milan,the musical scene was intense and lively; in the aristocratic salons academies were organised
in which honest amateurs and great virtuosos performed from time to time, while the Teatro Ducale staged the works of the most important composers of the time who, let's be honest, were rather intimidated by me. Not to mention the fact that one of the most authoritative composers of instrumental music worked in Milan: Giovan Battista Sammartini who,
in his honourable seventy years of life, had been the teacher of more than a generation of musicians. I was thrilled!We took lodgings in the Augustinian convent of San Marco, close to the Melzi palace, where Count Carlo di Firmian, himself a native of Salzburg, lived, a patron of the arts and a great lover of music. It was at his house that I performed in front of
the Milanese for the first time.For me, that evening was a real triumph! Of course, those know-it-all Milanese masters criticised me, starting with Sammartini himself, but he had to change his mind, publicly recognising my great qualities. At the end of the performance, Firmian himself honoured me with a gift of Metastasio's complete works.
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