Domenico Scarlatti

October 26, 1685 – July 23, 1757

Baroque Period

Born in Italy

Nothing is known about the early life of Domenico Scarlatti. Although he was probably trained by his father, Alessandro, who was a professional musician. Although he was born in Naples, Scarlatti moved first to Venice and then to Rome, where he worked for several members of royalty and became friends with Arcangelo Corelli. He lived in Spain for the last 28 years of his life and incorporated some of the aspects this country’s music into his works.

Scarlatti is noted for the keyboard sonatas (he wrote over 550 of these!) that were composed for his royal pupils. Each of these pieces is designed to teach a particular aspect of keyboard performance such as hand crossing, rapidly repeating notes, and arpeggios.