(1743-1805) was a prolific composer and a famous cellist in his day. He was born
in Lucca, Italy, and studied in Rome. Then he went with his father to work in
Vienna, and they both played in the court theatre orchestra for several years.
His style owes a lot to Haydn, and this is especially evident in his chamber
music. He went back to Lucca in 1764 for a couple of years, and then
continued travelling, via Paris, to Spain, where he settled. He worked for
the royal court of the infante Don Luis.
He wrote much music for
the cello, his own instrument, including many works on commission for Prince
Friedrich of Prussia. He composed 30 symphonies, some cello concertos, and a
vast amount of chamber music. His quintets are a little unusual, in being
scored for two violins, viola, and two cellos. One cello plays the
traditional bass line, whereas the other often plays the melody, in a very high
His most well-known piece is the Minuet and Trio - the 3rd
movement of his quintet in E, Op 13 No 5.