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Paper Session
Nov 21, 2021 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM(America/Chicago)
20211121T1000 20211121T1050 America/Chicago Personalities and Media in the Early Modern Era AMS 2021 ams@amsmusicology.org
“I am the only one to play it”: the self-fashioning of a lute-player in early 16th-century Italy
Individual Paper 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM (America/Chicago) 2021/11/21 16:00:00 UTC - 2021/11/21 16:50:00 UTC

The so-called Capirola Lutebook, preserved at the Newberry Library of Chicago since 1904, is one of the most important sources of instrumental music of the early 16th century. Vincenzo Capirola (1474-after 1548) was a Brescian gentleman from a wealthy family with historical links to the nearby town of Leno. In his fundamental study of 1955, Otto Gombosi suggested that the scribe of the manuscript, who self-identifies as Vidal, was a pupil of Capirola trying to preserve the knowledge of his master; this idea is still accepted in musicological literature. By contrast, this paper re-examines a different reading of the name suggested in 1981 by Orlando Cristoforetti: VIDAL as a pun on Capirola himself (VIncenzo DA Leno). If the scribe and the lutenist are one and the same person, the splendidly decorated manuscript can be viewed as the self-fashioning of a musician, not as a paid entertainer, but as a gentlemen of the Venetian Republic, one whose art contributes to the definition of his identity. Through the numerous references to specific abilities ('the secret of fastening the strings on the lute') or the uniqueness of his repertory ('I am the only one to play it' or 'this is only played by M. Vincenzo'), the musician performs a self-conscious fashioning of social and artistic individuality. This identity is reinforced by the personal notes added to the pieces ('facile', 'vecchio', 'airoso', etc.), which give an invaluable glimpse into his aesthetic values. A fresh reading of some pieces' dedicatees (for example Alvise di Garzoni, a Venetian statesman also active in Bergamo, France and Corfù) suggests a re-evaluation of the date and place suggested by Gombosi (Venice, 1515-1520). Instead of thinking about the maritime city as the only adequate center of artistic production, the Brescian connections of Capirola highlight the fruitful relations between Venice and its vast domain on the terraferma.   

Presenters
LM
Lucia Marchi
DePaul University
Embracing Opportunities Abroad: John Dowland and his Protestant Princes
Individual Paper 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM (America/Chicago) 2021/11/21 16:00:00 UTC - 2021/11/21 16:50:00 UTC

John Dowland (1563–1626) was one of the most successful musical entrepreneurs of his era, due largely to his ability to form important and lasting professional and courtly connections. His music was printed and marketed in London, and it was in England that he maintained steady connections to important patrons. Yet it was his international travels that informed his musical style and secured for him a widespread fame. Especially important among his continental supporters were three enlightened Protestant sovereigns who knew each other well and were tied together through familial lines and marriage contracts. These included two he referred to in his 1597 _First Booke of Songes or Ayres_ as "those two miracles of this age for virtue and magnificence": Heinrich Julius, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, who first issued the invitation that brought Dowland to the German lands in 1595, and Moritz, Landgrave of Hesse, a musician himself and devoted Dowland admirer. The third was Christian IV, King of Denmark and Norway, whom Dowland served from 1598 to 1606 but likely met during his earlier German travels. Recent scholarship by Sigrid Wirth, Arne Spohr, and Peter Hauge, among others, examines newly considered primary source information, offering greater insight into Dowland's time in Germany and Denmark. 


This paper delves farther, closely examining the potential symbiotic artist-patron relationship Dowland nurtured with the aforementioned three Protestant monarchs, as well as the ways in which the lutenist may have used his connections with each of these men as a means to further his own career, without tying himself permanently to a new citizenship or artistic community. Further, Dowland, who earlier proclaimed Catholic sympathies, demonstrates philosophical, intellectual, and artistic affinities with each of these enlightened nobles through his writings, music, and the lyrics he chose for his song collections. Thus his roles and experiences in these firmly Protestant courts offer a new lens through which to view this most intriguing musical figure whose interconnected personal, political, and religious interests conjure the image of a complex individual who navigated multifarious communities and spared no opportunity to promote his own interests.

Presenters
KG
K. Dawn Grapes
Colorado State University
The Residue of Performance: Scribal Symbols, Print Standardization, and the Florentine Madrigal
Individual Paper 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM (America/Chicago) 2021/11/21 16:00:00 UTC - 2021/11/21 16:50:00 UTC

Often the Italian madrigal is viewed as a print genre of the public marketplace. Yet it originated in handwritten anthologies restrictively circulated by Florentine patricians beginning in the 1520s. Though early madrigals were performed in various textures, elite Florentines commissioned written polyphony and gathered the pieces into scribal compendiums of partbooks, a practice that remained significant to private and public life in Florence into the 1530s and beyond (Fenlon and Haar 1988, pp. 8-9 and Canguilhem 2006, pp. 25-6, 39). In the decade when Venetian presses successfully distributed this repertory for the first time, manuscript anthologies remained objects of meaning and identity to their Florentine owners.


This paper locates such cultural meanings in the notational differences between handwritten and printed forms of the madrigal during 1530-40, arguing that performance traditions were encoded in scribal notation but were removed through print standardization. I examine the four extant Florentine manuscripts of the 1530s against contemporaneous published editions of similar repertory by the presses of Antonio Gardano and Ottaviano Scotto. In doing so, I highlight two notational forms that printmakers altered for broader accessibility. First, pause symbols (gestures of musical silence that scribes signified through diverse, hierarchical signs) were condensed into the barline. This led to semantic overload and a loss in performative meaning, a misuse Gioseffo Zarlino criticized in his 1558 treatise. Next, printmakers began omitting ligatures, yet by the sixteenth century this scribal gesture of eliding notation had transcended its essential function in chant for conveying held syllables and rhythms. Through a cross-source analysis of two madrigals appearing in Arcadelt's earliest extant print from 1539 and the Florentine manuscripts, I will demonstrate the ways in which Florentine scribes retained ligatures to transmit a manner of musical interpretation and structure to singers. Although Gardano's print omits these symbols and adheres words and rhythms through text underlay, the scribes preserve through ligatures a sense of musical cohesion and the sonic phenomena of performance.


Overall, this presentation will demonstrate the inseparability between material form and meaning, the relationship between technological and symbolic change, and the encoding of performance in media. 


Presenters
JL
Jonathan Ligrani
Columbia University
Colorado State University
Columbia University
DePaul University
Yale University
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