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Giornale della Societá del Quartetto di Milano

(Milan, 1864-1865)

Prepared by Elvidio Surian
Online only (2021)

The Giornale della Società del Quartetto di Milano [GSQM] was the official journal of the Società del Quartetto, founded in December 1863 by a group of artists identified with the so-called “Scapigliatura” (“Dissoluteness”), a mainly literary and aesthetic movement which aimed at reforming and revitalizing Italian arts. It promoted performances of instrumental music, of chamber music especially, thus contributing to widen the musical taste of the Milanese public, heretofore mostly limited to the operatic repertory. Among the founding members of the association were librettist-composer Arrigo Boito (1842-1918), composer and conductor Franco Faccio (1840-1891) and Giulio Ricordi (1840-1912). Its inaugural concert took place on 29 June 1864.

GSQM was published by Casa Ricordi without interruptions twice a month —three times a month only in July-August 1864 — from 10 July 1864 to 31 December 1865. Each issue consists of eight pages printed in a double-column format and numbered continuously: 112 pages in Anno I (14 issues,1864) and 192 pages in Anno II (18 issues, 1865). Its editor throughout was Alberto Mazzucato (1813-1877), a renowned composer, singing teacher, and writer on music.

A significant feature of the journal is the regular publication of the official acts and of the music contests sponsored by the association, as well as of an account of its activities. Worthy of attention are Boito’s reviews of performances of concerts, defined as “Esperimenti”, and of his article on the intrinsic qualities of Mendelssohn’s music. Also of interest are Mazzucato’s articles on Meyerbeer’s operas.

Publication of the journal was suspended in January 1866, probably due to the resumed publication on 1 April 1866 by Casa Ricordi of the Gazzetta musicale di Milano, suspended from 28 December 1862.