Spain 16th July 1796. Died: Oporto, July 1861. Ribas
first studied the flute and clarinet with his father who was a bandmaster in a
Spanish infantry regiment. He served in
the band of the regiment and was taken prisoner by the French during the
Peninsular War. Rescued from the island
by the British, he then served under Wellington
and was present at the Battle of Toulouse (1814).
leaving the army he settled in Oporto
and studied the flute with Parado, a Portuguese
flautist of some merit. He soon became a well known player in Spain and Portugal
performing on both flute and clarinet and in the 1820’s took up the position of
principal flute at the Lisbon Opera and that of first clarinet with the
Philharmonic Society of Oporto.
1826, Ribas was in London where he continued to perform on both
flute and clarinet. He was received well by London audiences and in 1835 was engaged as
second flute to Charles Nicholson at the King’s Theatre.
years later, on the death of Nicholson, he became principal. He continued to
occupy prestigious positions in London
including that of principal flute at the Philharmonic Concerts (1838-1851),
alongside William Card, and at the Royal Italian Opera (1847-1851) with John
played a Farewell Concert on August
7th 1851 and left England soon after in order to
retire but not before making a tour of Spain and Portugal. He
then settled back in Oporto
and spent his time teaching until his death in 1861.
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