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Enrico Terni

Enrico Terni was born 13 April 1879 in Alexandria (Egypt) to a wealthy Jewish family of Italian origin. He studied music in Florence and returned to Egypt after his studies to work as a composer and musicologist. Enrico Terni became an important part of the cultural life in Alexandria. He organised concerts and met many British and Italian artists who emigrated to Egypt at that time. So Enrico Terni became a close friend of British writer E.M. Forster, who wrote the short story "A Musician in Egypt" about him. Enrico Terni also met the famous Italian writer Fausta Cialente and they married in 1921. In 1935 Enrico Terni was one of the founding members of the "L'Atelier d'Alexandrie", a society to support musicians, painters, writers and other artists. He also wrote articles on music and reviews for several newspapers and journals in Egypt. Enrico Terni died on 1 May 1960 in Caldana (Lombardy, Italy).


Enrico Terni composed orchestral music: Symphonic poem "Marsyas" for orchestra after Henri de Regnier, Praeludium for orchestra, the orchestral poems "Amphytrite", "Episode", "Sweet home" and "Poeme elegiatique" and the incidental music "Leda". Among his chamber music compositions are two string quartets (one premiered by the Krettly Quartet in 1927), three violin sonatas, Prex dolorosa for violin and piano, a Sonata chromatica and Four portraits for piano.

In my possession is the autograph manuscript of the "Humoreske for violin and piano". The work was composed in December 1949 and is dedicated to Betty and Joan Percivall. Betty and Joan Percivall were sisters, Betty was a violinist and studied under Max Rostal and Joan Percivall was a pianist.

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