The Italian harpsichordist, Egida Giordani Sartori, began piano studies at the age of three with her mother. By the time she was four she gave a recital for a member of the Savoia royal family. At five she was the youngest student ever admitted to the Benedetto Marcello Music School in Venice, where she performed in a famous violin/piano duo with Nino Sanzogno, another young prodigy. Personal difficulties and World War II interrupted her musical activities. Eventually, she discovered the harpsichord and attended Ferruccio Vignanelli's course at the Santa Cecilia Conservatory in Rome. Her first harpsichord recital was in Prague.
Egida Giordani Sartori, often considered the dean of Italian harpsichordists, dedicated her life to the revival and popularization of this instrument. She performed in many important European cities, both as soloist and in collaboration with other eminent artists, including the conductors Carlo Maria Giulini, Riccardo Muti, Eugen Jochum, Peter Maag, Goffredo Petrassi and Domenico Bartolucci, and noted singers Toti dal Monte, Beniamino Gigli, Tito Schipa and Boris Christoff. She formed the ensembles Trio Antico, Musicorum Arcadia and Complesso strumentale di Venezia for the performance of chamber music.
Egida Giordani Sartori made a number of recordings for Vox, Fratelli Fabbri and Philis. Her famous collaboration with Arthur Grumiaux in Bachs Six Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord for Philips was awarded the Edison Prize. She also recorded programs for the RAI and several other European radio networks, including cycles of Girolamo Frescobaldi, Scarlatti and Galuppi for the BBC.
Egida Giordani Sartori played an important role in the discovery of the harpsichord and its repertoire. Her musicological research shed new light on 18th century Venetian music, particularly that of Galuppi. She taught harpsichord at conservatories in Venice, Milan and Rome, and for twenty years she gave master-classes and concerts on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore near Venice. These programs were organized through lAssociazione Clavicembalistica Italiana, which she founded and directed, and were made possible by the generous support of the Fondazione G. Cini. Sartori died in 1999.
Sartori's book, Le mie memorie con Toti Dal Monte, relates memories of her close friendship with the legendary soprano Toti dal Monte, as well as experiences from her own childhood. A new biograpy of Sartori has recently been published: Cronaca di una favola chiamata musica. Biografia artistica di Egida Sartori (1910-1999).