The Neapolitan education
In January 1793 Gaspare Spontini was admitted to one of the four Musical Conservatories active in Naples: The Conservatorio della Pietà dei Turchini. Some of the most famous musicians, such as Paisiello and Cimarosa, lived in Naples in that period. In 1795 probably impatient to the education, Spontini decided to leave Naples and started touring several Italian towns: from Rome again to Naples, from Palermo to Florence and to Venice. A Roman impresario, a Mr Sigismondi or Sismondi, appreciated his talent and entrusted him with the task of composing an opera, Li puntigli delle donne, performed for the first time in Rome, at the Teatro della Pallacorda, in Piazza Firenze, during the Carnival in 1796. The libretto, probably by Francesco Cerlone, is focused on a traditional comic situation. The autographical score is preserved in the Library of the S. Pietro a Majella Conservatory in Naple. The debut was very successful: Spontini returned in fact to the Neapolitan Conservatory, obtained Cimarosa and Piccinni’s esteem, and above all obtained new artistic commissions: L’eroismo ridicolo in 1798 (Naples, Teatro Nuovo, on a libretto by Domenico Piccinni, brother of the famous composer Niccolò), adapted the following year as La finta filosofa.