Jul 17, 2023 at 2:05 p.m
The daughter of the Venetian physician Antonio Membo, she was a student of Francesco Cavalli. She married into a respectable family, and in 1672 Antonia Bembo filed for divorce, accusing her husband of constant abuse, theft and infidelity. Then Antonia Bembo left her hometown and traveled to Paris with guitarist Francesco Corbetta.
What a move, because she had to start from scratch in a city on the Seine, learn the language, and make connections so she could make money as a musician. She managed to get an audience with the French king, sang for him, and the king granted her a pension. The basis of her ability to live and compose in a Parisian convent. Antonia Bembo not only became acquainted with the French language, but also with French music and combined French and Italian idioms in her works. In the opening concert of this year’s Ambras Castle Concerts, soprano Ulrike Hofbauer and the Accademia degli Stravaganti, founded by Tyrolean-born harpist Anne-Marie Dragossets, trace the life of Antonia Bembo.
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