Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi was born from a very modest family in Roncole di Busseto on 10 October 1813. After receiving his first education from the parish priest, in 1823 he entered the gymnasium where he took music lessons from Ferinando Provesi, director of the municipal music school. the young Verdi is able to replace both the organ and in the direction of the local philharmonic.
Received a scholarship from the Monte di Pietà of Busseto, Verdi in 1832 presented at the Conservatory of Milan, but incredibly is not admitted. However, he remained in Milan for the following three years, taking lessons from Vincenzo Lavigna, maestro at the harpsichord of La Scala. Shortly thereafter he was recalled to Busseto where he successfully competed in place of music teacher of the town and marries Margherita Barezzi, who in the following two years will give him the sons Virginia and Icilio.
Once definitively left Busseto moved to Milan, where he began to give shape to his compositional vein: in November 1839 at La Scala he successfully represented Oberto, count of San Bonifacio, but in the following year he was struck by the death of his wife Margherita and her children. from the disastrous outcome of another work, Un giorno di regno.
Loving and struck by the pain of the family tragedy, Verdi, now devoid of his family, does not give up and wins the ransom with the triumph of Nabucco, represented at La Scala on March 9, 1842 and given in reply for as many as 64 in the first year of running.
In the following period, which Verdi would have called "the years of prison", he engaged in a frenetic activity to make his way on the operatic market: between 1844 and 1850 as many as 11 works that will see him establish itself in the major theaters of Italy. Verdi crowned this first phase with three masterpieces of essentiality and dramatic concentration such as Rigoletto, Trovatore and La Traviata, while in the following years he slowed down opera production by moving to the countryside and spending the winters in Genoa.
In 1861 the political commitment was added to the artistic life, becoming deputy of the first unitary parliament, but abandoning parliamentary activity in 1863.
These years are the compositions of Aida, La forza del destino and the Messa da requiem written for the death of Alessandro Manzoni.
His two last masterpieces, Othello of 1887 and Falstaff of 1893 saw him elaborate a modern theatrical language able to face the new horizons opened by Wagner. He spent the last years in Milan until his death on January 27, 1901, following a stroke suffered a few days earlier. The funeral takes place without pomp or music, as requested by him, with the body transferred between wings of the crowd at the Municipal Cemetery of Milan and, a month later, at the Rest Home for Musicians he wanted and built, where he's still today .