Alberto Curci

     Alberto Curci was born in Naples, (the chief town of region Campania, Italy), on December 5th, 1886, and died there on June 2nd, 1973.
     He studied violin with the Master A.Ferni and in 1904 he graduated from the Neapolitan "San Pietro a Majella" Conservatory.
    The following year he went to Berlin to specialize under the guidance of Joseph Joachim and soon he began a swift and brilliant career, giving concerts for several years in the main European towns, the Dutch Indies and the East.
     His grandfather Francesco Curci was born in
Avellino, an important town of region Campania (Italy), and in 1860 he had moved to Naples to open a shop of musical instruments and handwritten scores, starting up a business which grew and branched out, thanks to his descendants' work.


      The real publishing activity of the "Curci Musical House" began with the operetta "Liebesboykott" (War to love), composed by Alberto Curci on Johannes Bubendey's German libretto and performed in Hamburg at the "Neus Operetten Theater".

     On his return to Italy, Alberto devoted himself to the didactic career and he gained, owing to competitions, the violin teaching posts in Palermo and in Parma. Afterwards, Francesco Cilea, director of the "San Pietro a Majella" Conservatory of Naples, appointed him full professor of violin, without competition. Since then, Alberto spent 40 years moulding a crowd of remarkable violinists, both teachers and concert artists, including Aldo Pavanelli and Angelo Gaudino.     

    In 1919, Alberto, with his brother Alfredo and the Master Oreste de Rubertis, set up a very noble initiative: the establishment of the "Friends of Music" Association, which was subsidized for patronage purposes by the "Curci Musical House".

For a whole decade, this institution carried out a precious and intense cultural activity, whose aim was to make known to the Neapolitan public the works of the most illustrious musicians of all time, performed by their most famous interpreters. This side of Alberto Curci's work, directed to the worldwide spread of the musical culture,  was specially dedicated to publish timeless masterworks with the Edizioni Curci. (the former "Curci Musical House").

"Friends of Music"  Association

     Among the pianists who were invited by the institution there were: EugŔne D'Albert, Wihelm Bachaus, Artur Schnabel, Carlo Zecchi, Edwin Fischer, Walter Gieseking, Leonid Kreutzer, Leopold Godowski, Alexander Borowski, Alfredo Casella, Mario Castelnuovo Tedesco, Ernesto Consolo, Alfred Cortot, Arthur Rubinstein, Rudolff Serkin.
     Among the violinists: Carl Flesch, Ferenc von Vecscey, Arrigo Serato, Fritz Kreisler, Adolph Busch, Mario Corti, Remy Principe, Jascha Heifetz, Florizel von Reuter, Gioconda de Vito.
     Among the cellists: Arnold F÷ldesy, Arturo Bonucci, Julius Doktor, Emmanuel Feuermann, Gaspar Cassad˛, and among the groups:  the Busch Quartet, the Budapest Quartet, the Consolo-Serato-Bonucci Trio.
     Most of the foreign artists were invited for the first time in Italy. 

     Together with the Masters Vincenzo Romaniello and Celeste Capuana, Alberto Curci was one of the first music teachers of a Neapolitan little boy named  Renato Carosone,  who was already irremediably marked by his unrestrainable musical passion.

     Alberto's compositions were always closely connected to the technique of his dearest instrument, the most congenial for him, the one that he considered the highest means of artistic expression: the violin.

Edizioni Curci's 1st century

His works for violin and orchestra are the clear proof of it: the three "Concertos" ( including the "Concerto Romantico", Romantic Concerto, and the "Suite Italiana in stile antico",  Italian Suite in ancient style)  and his teaching works, still largely used. For example, the "Tecnica Fondamentale del violino", Violin Basic Technique, in 6 volumes.

     Alberto's versatile, tireless and passionate activity was rewarded by the highest honours, as the election for two three-year-periods to member of the Superior Council of the Fine Arts, the appointment to Santa Cecilia's Academician, the awarding of a gold medal of the Ministry of the State Education for cultural and educational merits.

     The establishment of the "FONDAZIONE CURCI" (Curci Foundation) in 1966, whose inaugural evening was ended by a concert of the "Quartetto Italiano",  was the most unforgettable and singular act of a life entirely devoted to music. 

     Alberto was 80 years old by then and he could have rested at last,  proud and satisfied with the goals he had reached with his  tenacious work, besides enjoying his fortune.
     On the contrary, burdened with years but indomitable, he gave up a large share of his wealth for this great and unselfish institution of patronage, whose spacious seat was in an ancient building in the center of Naples, at the corner between "Piazza Trieste e Trento" and "via Nardones", which has been recently moved to a near street, "via Santa Brigida n.68".

Alberto Curci

    He started to gradually carry out the various aims of his Foundation: prize competitions for symphonic and chamber music composers, prize contexts for instrumental performances, beginning with violin, institution of encouragement prizes for young music students, series of concerts of  instrumental and vocal chamber music.

      The most ambitious part of the Curci Foundation plan concerned the instrumental performance competitions. In the autumn of 1967, the first biennal INTERNATIONAL VIOLIN COMPETITION took place and immediately aroused great worldwide interest, promoting a lot of talents in the following editions too. 

     After many unlucky events that led to long years of silence of the Foundation, besides its change of seat, the International Violin Competition revived in November 2002, when the twelfth edition took place successfully, presieded by Gioacchino Lanza Tomasi. The members of the jury were Michele Abbado, Marco Fornaciari, Angelo Gaudino, Michael Frishenschlager, Sergej Krylov, Aiman Mussakhogiayeva, Eugene Sarbu. 

     For informations:

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2002 - XII░ edition of the International Violin Competition "Alberto Curci"



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