Monteverdi and His Contemporaries
This collection of reprinted essays takes the trends of the author's Music, Patronage and Printing in Late Renaissance Florence (also in the 'Variorum' series) in a somewhat different direction. If the focus there was primarily on archival documents, here it is on the actual music. The starting-point is similar - the rise of the 'new music' for solo voice and basso continuo in late sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century Florence, in particular the songs of Giulio Caccini. But it moves on to broader aesthetic issues crystallized in contemporary theoretical debate and musical practice - not least the rise of aria-based styles - and concludes with a series of studies of Claudio Monteverdi's works for the theatre, including the operas Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria (1640) and the ever-problematic L'incoronazione di Poppea (1643).
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