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Delpini, Carlo Antonio (DNB00)


DELPINI, CARLO ANTONIO (d. 1828), pantomimist and manager, was born in Rome and was a pupil of Nicolini. About 1774 he was engaged by Garrick for Drury Lane. At this house, Covent Garden, and the Haymarket, he supplied the mechanical arrangements for many pantomimes in which he acted. The best known of these are ‘Robinson Crusoe,’ in which he played the hero to the Friday of Grimaldi, ‘Don Juan,’ and ‘The Deserter of Naples.’ The two latter pieces were given respectively on 12 Aug. 1787 and 1 Jan. 1788 at the Royalty Theatre in Wellclose Square, when that building was opened by Palmer. On 17 Feb. 1789 Delpini was severely hurt at the Haymarket, acting in the ‘Death of Captain Cook,’ a serious ballet from the French. Delpini was for a time stage manager at the Opera. He managed private theatricals, and made on his own account some ventures, giving once at the Pantheon a grand masquerade, called ‘La Fiera di Venezia,’ to George IV when prince regent, the tickets for which were sold at three guineas each. He also arranged entertainments at Brighton for George IV. In his late years he fell into poverty, and died 13 Feb. 1828 in Lancaster Court, Strand.

[Gent. Mag. for 1828; New Monthly Magazine, August 1828; Thespian Dict.]

J. K.