G. Donizetti was born and died in Bergamo, but his career extended from Italy to France and, more generaly, Europe. This paper examines how he graguated from a Neapolitan musician to a successfull European composer, and how his travels from one European centre to the other influenced his work. From 1828 to 1838, Naples was the main city for Donizetti’s production, although his Italian works were performed in Paris in 1831. The composer finally came to Paris in 1835, the first of several long visits to the city. In 1840 he composed two French works, an opéra comique (La Fille du Régiment) and a grand opéra (La Favorite) which were performed in the two most important Parisian opera houses : the Opéra-Comique and the Opéra. This was the beginning of a new European renown for Donizetti, who was subsequently invited to compose two operas for Vienna, Linda di Chamounix and Maria di Rohan.