Tito Eduardo Achille Mattei (24 May 1839–30 March 1914) was an Italian pianist, composer, and conductor.
Born at Campobasso in Italy, he was educated in Naples where he studied with Sigismond Thalberg, Carlo Conti, and Michele Ruta. A musical prodigy, he gave his first concert in 1846 aged 5 afterwards touring Italy, France and Germany. At just 11 years-old in 1852 he was appointed Professor at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome. He gave his first performance in London in 1853 aged 12 and also in 1853 played before Pope Pius IX who gave him a gold medal; he was appointed pianist to Victor Emmanuel II, the King of Italy. In 1863 he moved to London where he became the conductor at Her Majesty's Theatre. Mattei was a Chevalier of the Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus and belonged to various important musical societies including the Societa Filarmonica of Florence. In 1870 he organised and conducted a season of Italian Opera in London. In 1871 he married Amalia Colombo (born 1845) at Kensington in London. Their daughter Mona Mattei was born in London in 1875.
He wrote several hundred piano-pieces and songs which had a moderate success including the ballet The Spider and the Fly, 'For the Sake of the Past', 'Dear Heart', 'Non torno', 'Non è ver', and 'Oh! Oh! Hear the Wild Wind Blow'. His operas included Maria di Grand and the comic opera La Prima Donna. He contributed ballet music and the song "O Leave Me Not, Dear Heart" to the burlesque melodrama Monte Cristo Jr. (1886) which played at the Gaiety Theate in London and had a cast including Nellie Farren, Letty Lind and Marion Hood. A Freemason, in 1888 he joined the Rothesay Lodge No 1687 in London.
As well as composing Mattei enjoyed driving fast cars; an incident occurred in 1909 when the 68 year-old Mattei broke the speed limit while the American lawyer Rufus Applegarth was a passenger. Applegarth defended Mattei at the Police Court and despite the prosecution's objections that Applegarth could not defend his client in an English court despite his 40 years experience as an American lawyer he successfully got his client off the charge.
Several of his works have been played during the BBC Proms including 'Non è ver' and 'Bianca'.
Although he was a successful musician the last period of his life was not affluent; in 1901 he was living alone as a lodger at an address in Paddington in London. Tito Mattei died in London in 1914 at the age of 74.
Birth and Death Data: Born May 24th, 1841 (Campobasso), Died London
Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1896 - 1938
Roles Represented in DAHR: composer
Recordings (Results 1-25 of 62 records)
|Company||Matrix No.||Size||First Recording Date||Title||Primary Performer||Description||Role||Audio|
|Berliner||1604||7-in.||11/17/1896||Non è ver||Ferruccio Giannini||Tenor vocal solo||composer|
|Berliner||0599||7-in.||10/3/1899||Non e ver||Ferruccio Giannini||Tenor vocal solo||composer|
|Berliner||0781||7-in.||Dec. 1899||Non è ver||George Schweinfest||Piccolo solo||composer|
|Berliner||0979||7-in.||Before June 1900||Non è ver||E. Francisco [i.e., Emilio de Gorgorza]||Baritone vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix A-]239||7-in.||10/13/1900||Non è ver||George Schweinfest||Flute solo||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix A-]442||7-in.||10/19/1900||Non è ver||Sig. Carlos Francisco||Baritone vocal solo, with piano||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix A-]559||7-in.||12/4/1900||Dear heart||Rosalia Chalia ; Jane Frankel||Vocal duet (soprano and contralto)||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix A-]782||7-in.||1901-1902||Dear heart||Herbert Goddard||Baritone vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix B-]782||10-in.||1901-1902||Dear heart||Herbert Goddard||Baritone vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix A-]1055||7-in.||10/24/1901||Non è ver||Jules Levy||Cornet solo||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix B-]1055||10-in.||10/24/1901||Non è ver||Jules Levy||Cornet solo||composer|
|Victor||[Pre-matrix B-]3327||10-in.||5/6/1901||Dear heart||Herbert Goddard||Baritone vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||A-488||7-in.||10/5/1903||Non è ver||Jules Levy||Cornet solo||composer|
|Victor||B-488||10-in.||10/5/1903||Non è ver||Jules Levy||Cornet solo||composer|
|Victor||A-1434||7-in.||6/7/1904||Non è ver||Sig. Carlos Francisco||Baritone vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||A-1470||7-in.||6/10/1904||Dear heart||Herbert Goddard||Baritone vocal solo, with piano||composer|
|Victor||B-1470||10-in.||6/10/1904||Dear heart||Herbert Goddard||Baritone vocal solo, with piano||composer|
|Victor||B-2134||10-in.||1/11/1905||Dear heart||Arthur Pryor's Orchestra||Orchestra, with trombone solo||composer|
|Victor||B-2330||10-in.||2/24/1905||Non è ver||Arthur Pryor||Trombone solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||B-2375||10-in.||3/14/1905||Dear heart||Mina Hickman||Female vocal solo||composer|
|Victor||B-4922||10-in.||11/12/1907||The sailor's prayer||Percy Hemus||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||B-6162||10-in.||4/30/1908||Through sunny Spain||Elise Stevenson||Female vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||B-6163||10-in.||4/30/1908||Dear heart||Elise Stevenson||Female vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||B-6483||10-in.||9/29/1908||Non è ver||Paul Volkmann||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
|Victor||C-7004||12-in.||4/16/1909||Dear heart||George Hamlin||Tenor vocal solo, with orchestra||composer|
Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Mattei, Tito," accessed October 22, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103978.
Mattei, Tito. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved October 22, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103978.
"Mattei, Tito." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 22 October 2020.
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