Monteverdi Madrigals

Monteverdi Madrigals:
 Songs of Love and War

Pacific MusicWorks (USA) 
directed by Stephen Stubbs (Seattle)
Saturday, 8 November, 8 pm  Pre-concert talk 7:10 pm Alix Goolden Hall, 907 Pandora (at Quadra)

Catherine Webster soprano, Danielle Reuter-Harrah mezzo
Reginald Mobley countertenor, Ross Hauck and Aaron Sheehan tenors, Douglas Williams bass
Tekla Cunningham and Linda Melsted violinists, Elisabeth Reed baroque cello
Maxine Eilander baroque harp and harpist

In Claudio Monteverdi’s extraordinarily long composing career, he led the way for the entire musical world from the Renaissance to the Baroque—from the a cappella madrigal to the fully-realized “madrigali concertanti” (replete with continuo accompaniment and obbligato strings) and from the early court opera to the world’s first public operas in Venice. He published his eighth book of “madrigals” (Madrigali guerrieri, et amorosi…libro ottavo, Venice, 1638) when he was seventy-one years old, nineteen years after the seventh was printed.

The eighth and last book of madrigals holds a place of highest significance for both its content and its extensive preface. The latter is a kind of manifesto not only of his personal philosophy of composition but for the aesthetic goals of modern music in his time.

Monteverdi’s expressed aim was for music to present the entire range of man’s passions. He had come to believe that there was a particular element heretofore missing from the expressive range of music, and he was determined to supply it. Earlier composers, he believed, had realized only two of man’s three major passions: the soft and the moderate. A third passion, agitation, was too important to be overlooked and he now intended to rectify the omission. Love songs were of course nothing new, but setting them next to the stirring rhythms of his newly invented depiction of war in music brings novel and dramatic contrasts to this programme.

Focused primarily on theatrical and concert performances of baroque and classical music, Pacific MusicWorks is an institute-in-residence at the University of Washington’s School of Music. Renowned lutenist and artistic director Stephen Stubbs brings a strong group of singers and musicians back to the stage of Alix Goolden Hall in this mostly-Monteverdi programme.

Hor che’l ciel, e la terra  Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643), Madrigals of War and Love, Eighth Book, 1638
Chiome d’oro Monteverdi, Seventh Book of Madrigals, 1619
Gira il nemico Monteverdi, Eighth Book of Madrigals
Ego flos campi Monteverdi, Second Collection of Sacred Songs, 1624
Sonata terza Dario Castello, Sonate Concertate in Stil Moderno, Libro II (Venice, 1629)
Et e pur dunque vero Monteverdi, Scherzi musicali, 1632
Augellin Monteverdi, Seventh Book of Madrigals
Lamento della Ninfa Monteverdi, Eighth Book of Madrigals
Sonata Undecima Dario Castello (c.1590-c.1658), Concerto Sonatas in the Modern Style, Book II, 1629
Ogni amante è guerrier Monteverdi, Eighth Book of Madrigals
L’eroica à 3 Andrea Falconieri (1585/6-1656) First Book of Canzone, Symphonies, Fantasies, 1650
Altri canti di Marte Monteverdi, Eighth Book of Madrigals

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