(b Tortona, nr Piacenza, 20 Dec. 1872; d Rome, 12 Oct. 1956). Italian composer. He studied in Rome and Milan, then went in 1893 to Regensburg, where he worked with F. X. Haberl. In 1894 he was appointed maestro di cappella at St Mark's, Venice, being ordained shortly afterwards. In 1898 he was made director of the Sistine Chapel, in which capacity he was influential in drawing up the motu proprio of 1903, advocating the return to a ‘pure’ style of church music. Perosi's compositions of this period, which include a St Mark Passion (1897), display the influences of both 16th-century polyphony and Wagner; his oratorios were acclaimed internationally. After a mental breakdown during World War I he recovered to produce a few small-scale works.
From The Oxford Companion to Music in Oxford Reference.