Music: Il Bruttino

In Italian musical circles, short, homely Composer Luigi Dallapiccola is affectionately known as Il Bruttino—The Ugly One. For some Italian critics, the name also applies to his dodecafonico music. In Italy, the land of Verdi and Puccini, Luigi Dallapiccola, 46, is the chief disciple of Arnold Schoenberg's strange-to-the-ear twelve-tone technique.

Like dodecacophonists the world over, Istrian-born Composer Dallapiccola has had a rough road to follow. He has gained an international reputation, says one Florentine critic, "[simply] because he is connected musically to international trends." At home, he has won critical respect because,...