Born on September 18, 1587 to Giulio Caccini and Lucia Gagnolanti.
c. 1640 in Florence, Italy
Also Known As:
Nicknamed La Cacchina (The Songbird), Francesca Caccini was a prominent female composer of the Baroque period and the first known female composer to write a full opera. Aside from being a composer, she was also a poet, vocalist and musician. She played several instruments, including the guitar, harpsichord and lute. By 1623, Francesca was the highest paid singer in the Medici court.
Type of Compositions:
Unfortunately, most of her works were unpublished but it is said that she wrote secular and sacred songs, canzonettas, operas and other dramatic works. She also published Il Primo libro delle Musche a una due voci; a compilation of her compositions.
Francesca Caccini came from a family of musicians. Her father; Guilio Caccini, was a composer and member of the Florentine Camerata. Her mother; Lucia, was a singer and her sister; Settimia was likewise a composer and singer. Around 1600 at the age of 13, Francesca made her debut as a singer during the premiere of the opera "Euridice."
Some of her known works are "La Liberazione di Riggiero dall' Isola d'Alcina" ("Liberation of Ruggiero," with libretto by Ferdinando Saracinelli), "La stiava" and "Ballo della Zigane."
Around 1605, Francesca was offered the position of court singer for King Henry IV of France. She had to decline the offer because the Grand Duke Ferdinand of Florence refused to release her from his court. Around 1607, Francesca married musician Giovanni Battista Signori with whom she had a daughter. After Signori died in 1626, she married musician Tommaso Raffaelli with whom she had a son.
For more on Francesca Caccini, visit the Classical Composers Database