|G.F. Handel was the consummate, 18th-century traveler, artiste, and entrepreneur. He was an independent and strong-willed individual, and although he was approached several times by royal patrons to become their court composer, Handel was hesitant to professionally "settle down" until he was offered a position commensurate with the status he felt he deserved.
Born in Halle, Germany, Handel grew up under the watchful eyes of his parents; while his mother nurtured his musical gifts, Handel's father tried to dissuade him from pursuing a dubious occupation. Following brief, unsuccessful studies at the local university, Handel traveled to Hamburg and then onto Italy (Florence, Rome, Naples, Venice) where he met important individuals who greatly influenced his musical future, such as the composers/musicians, Arcangelo Corelli and Domenico Scarlatti and numerous royalty (both religious and secular). Handel lived a full and productive life. Yet, life wasn't easy for him. At various times, he was severely criticized by the English social establishment for his artistic output -- some considered it profane.