MUZIO CLEMENTI (Rome 1752 – Evesham 1832) was a composer, pianist, pedagogue, publisher, cultural promoter, pianist builder and one of the musical personalities that most influenced the bases of pianistic technique.
Contemporary of Mozart and Beethoven, his longevity placed him as one of the precursors of romanticism. Beethoven admired him and taught Clementi’s sonatas to his students. There are still some studies and sonatas in the conservatory programs today. As a child, organist prodigy in San Lorenzo in Damaso in Rome, at fourteen he went to England with the help of Peter Beckford, where he developed his most important musical career. From his experience as a piano concert pianist, the restless Clementi developed, on the one hand, his pedagogical work and, on the other, he transferred his knowledge to the manufacture of the instrument, creating his own company. Great cosmopolitan, he defined himself: I am an Italian young man but an old Englishman. He was buried with honors at Westminster and his epitaph recognizes him as the father of the piano.
Muzio Clementi is a key figure in the development of pianistic language that includes both technical and musical repertoire. His legacy spread throughout Europe and Russia thanks to his intense activity and to his numerous and brilliant disciples.
Clementi is the initiator of what was later called the London Pianoforte School that influenced both romantic pianism. His numerous sonatas, still little known, advance in many technical and sound aspects to the work of Beethoven.
Muzio Clementi Grave (Westminster Abbey)