8th January 1822
18th July 1901
Carlo Alfredo Piatti was an Italian cellist and teacher, born at via Borgo Canale, in Bergamo. The son of violinist Antonio Piatti, he originally began his studies on the violin before switching to the cello. Later he studied under Gaetano Zanetti and Vincenzo Merighi. He made his concert debut at 15, though at first he did not draw large crowds despite his undeniable skill. After he fell ill and was forced to sell his cello to cover medical costs, he was discovered by Franz Liszt, who presented him with a superb new instrument. Piatti went on to become one of the most celebrated cellists of his day, as popular for the pieces he wrote as for the way he performed them. From 1838, he journeyed over Europe. In 1859, on the foundation of the Popular Concerts, he took up the post of first cello which he retained for 39 seasons. He played a Stradivarius which now is named after him and is owned by the Mexican cellist Carlos Prieto.