Al suono de Soavi flauti


In the 16th century, the Republic of Venice had probably more connections with the recorder than any other city, and could legitimately claim the title “Capital of the Recorder”. The connections between the Venetian Bassano Family and the English court have been well documented and the fame of Ganassi’s Fontegara has had an influence on contemporaneous performance practice reaching far beyond the recorder. Less well known perhaps is the fact that archival records point to the instrument being hugely popular amongst amateur players, so much so that when the Accademia Filarmonica was established in Verona in 1547, the recorder featured strongly amongst the instruments represented there.

So what sort of music was played in the Veneto during the 16th century? Archival sources and title pages of printed music suggest that motets, madrigals chansons and dance music could all be played on recorders. Additionally, ricercares and later canzonas would also often have been part of the recorder’s natural repertoire.

This programme concentrates on the period 1540 – 1580, a particularly important moment in the development of Western Music, bordered as it was by key composers Adriaen Willaert and Andrea Gabrieli. Willaert was at the centre of what came to be known as the Venetian school, a group of composers and theorists, both Flemish (Jacquet de Berchem, Perissone Cambio, Jan Nasco en Cipriano de Rore) as well as Italian (Vincenzo Ruffo, Girolamo Parabosco, Annibale Padovano, Nicola Vicentino en Alvixe Willaert). Despite also having connections with Willaert, Gabrieli can be seen as the founder of a new generation of (Venetian born) composers who depended less on the Franco-Flemish tradition, and amongst whose ranks would soon feature internationally renowned composers such as Giovanni Gabrieli and the German, Heinrich Schütz.

[ set-list ]