Born October 12, 1821 in Ravenna, he is considered one of the greatest Italian conductors of all time. He was a pupil of Gioacchino Rossini and of a famous contrapuntist of the time, the monk Levrini, from whom he took lessons in composition. At the age of 20, he was called to conduct the municipal band of Sant'Agata Feltria, thus beginning his promising career. In memory of this debut, Angelo Mariani was named after the Sant'Agata theater, the oldest theater in Italy built entirely of wood. In 1844 he made his debut as conductor at the opening of the municipal theater in Messina, with Puccini's Saffo; later he conducted two symphonies by Rossini in Florence. From Sant'Agata he moved to Faenza, then to Milan and then to Germany, where he had the direction of several theatrical performances; he then directed Cori and Canti pastorali, on words by Trinissino, in the Teatro olimpico in Vicenza. In 1847 he had the post of director of the court theater in Copenhagen. After the War of 1848, in which he participated as a volunteer, he became director of the Pera Theater in Istanbul. His experience in Turkey and especially the Turkish National Anthem deeply affected some of Mariani's compositions. He returned to Italy in 1852 and two years later obtained a position at the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa. In accepting the stable direction of the theater, he reserved a few months free each year to direct performances in other cities in Italy. In Ravenna in 1865, on the sixth centenary of his birth, he composed the very famous Inno a Dante. He enjoyed great success in Bologna, where he directed the theater season every autumn. He had already established himself as one of Italy's first conductors, when in 1857 his meeting in Rimini with Giuseppe Verdi further increased his fame, consecrating him as number one. Works by Verdi himself that had fallen into complete failure, such as La Traviata, thanks to his conducting were completely re-evaluated. The two composers collaborated in perfect harmony for eleven years, until they separated due to some misunderstandings.