1st Edition

Bolognese Instrumental Music, 1660–1710
Spiritual Comfort, Courtly Delight, and Commercial Triumph

ISBN 9781138255937
Published November 29, 2016 by Routledge
414 Pages

USD $62.95

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Book Description

This book, the first of its kind, is a study of Bolognese instrumental music during the height of the city's musical activity in the late seventeenth century. The period”marked by a rapid expansion of the cappella musicale of the principal city church, San Petronio, by the founding of the Accademia Filarmonica, and by increasingly lavish patronage of musical events”witnessed the proliferation of repertory for instrumental ensembles. This music not only reveals crucial stages in the development of the sonata and concerto but also recalls the elaborate church rituals and the opulent public and private celebrations in which they figured prominently. Moreover, the late seventeenth century saw the heyday of Bolognese music publishing, whose output of sonatas and related instrumental genres easily surpassed that of the once-dominating Venetian presses. The approach taken here departs from composer- and genre-centered monographs on Italian instrumental music in order to illuminate an array of topics that center on the Bolognese repertory: the social condition of instrumentalist-composers; the acumen of music publishers in the creation of the repertory; the diverse contexts of the instrumental dances; the influence of liturgical traditions on sonata topoi; the impact of psalmodic practice on tonal style; and the innovative climate that led to experiments with scoring and form in the earliest instrumental concertos. In sum, this book not only illustrates the historically significant and defining features of the music, but also links the surviving repertory to the flourishing musical culture in which it was created.

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; Chronicles of instrumentalists and composers; The forms and uses of the sonata da camera; Bologna, Modena, and the place of viruosity; Da chiesa and da camera; Sacred music, musical topoi, and the sonata in church; Tonal style, modal theory, and church tradition; The concerto before the concerto; Appendices; Bibliography; Index.

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Gregory Barnett is Assistant Professor of Musicology in The Shepherd School of Music, Rice University, Houston, Texas, USA.


’This is absolutely essential reading for anyone interested in North Italian instrumental music of the period... There is an astonishing amount of information here, tabulated when it is helpful to do so, lots of music examples, all underlying an intelligent discussion on essential topics.’ Early Music Review ’...the book is to be highly recommended for anyone interested in the music and musical life of late 17th-century Italy both for its own sake and for what it can tell us about Italian sonatas and concertos, which were to be so widely exported and imitated in the 18th century.’ Early Music ’In the capable hands of Gregory Barnett we are guided not only through the works themselves but through various different ways of viewing the music in the context of late seicento society... [a] well written and wide-ranging survey of mid-baroque instrumental music. ...His line of reasoning, particularly with regard to issues of genre designation, results in original and thought-provoking conclusions that may be subject to further debate, but are certainly destined not to be neglected.’ Notes ’... this book is the most extensive and thorough study published to date of instrumental music of Bologna and its environs during its 50-year heyday. ...it is a valuable resource for anyone involved in any way with Italian instrumental music of the 17th or early 18th centuries. Barnett has approached head-on the controversial problems having to do with this music, presenting us with a well-thought-out, thorough study that will be a seminal book in its field for years to come.’ Early Music America ’This book is generously illustrated with picutres, frontispieces and, especially, musical examples, which often present quite substantial extracts from very obscure compositions. ... this study presents its often complex material clearly and succinctly; it is the product of an enormous quantity of musical, archival and analytical research, and breaks new ground. ... It ca