PERFORMANCE NOTES The choices to make when dealing with a piece such as the "aria called la frescobalda" concern many aspects of the art of piano playing; in the first place we must consider that this piece was not conceived for the piano, but for the organ and therefore we will never be able to produce a valid imitation with our instrument, even though we must always take into consideration the original sounds for which the piece was intended. In second place, the other important aspect concerns the knowledge of Renaissance and Baroque dances, which must be used as a fundamental basis when choosing speeds and dynamics. In the piece there are also melodic and polyphonic sections in which we must prioritize the comprehensibility and the cantabile, both so dear to Frescobaldi composer and keyboardist. Having said that, in the initial air I tried to bring out not only the cantabile mood but also the rhythmic tension that appears in the theme, only just hinted, to highlight the double nature of the variations that follow. I chose to play the first of these variations in moderate time and with a certain softness of sound, that should allow an easy comprehension of the counterpoints.
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His father Filippo was a man of property, possibly an organist, since both Girolamo and his half-brother Cesare became organists. In his early twenties, Frescobaldi left his native Ferrara for Rome. Reports place Frescobaldi in that city as early as , but his presence can only be confirmed by Between —13 Frescobaldi began to work for Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini. He remained in his service until after the death of Cardinal Aldobrandini in February Frescobaldi was given such a good offer he agreed to enter his employ.
However, at his arrival in Mantua the reception was so cold that Frescobaldi returned to Rome by April In addition to his duties at the Basilica and the Aldobrandini establishment, Frescobaldi took pupils and occasionally worked at other churches. His major works from this period were instrumental pieces including: a second version of the first book of toccatas , ricercars and canzonas , the cappricios , the second book of toccatas , and a volume of canzonas for one to four instruments and continuo During his sojourn there he was the highest paid musician and served as the organist of the Florence baptistery for a year.
The composer returned to Rome in April , having been summoned into the service of the powerful Barberini family, i. Frescobaldi published one of his most influential collections, Fiori musicali , in , and also produced reprints of older collections in Frescobaldi died on 1 March after an illness that lasted for 10 days. He was buried in Santi Apostoli , but the tomb disappeared during a rebuilding of the church in the late 18th century. A grave bearing his name and honoring him as one of the fathers of Italian music exists in the church today.
Of the forty pieces in the collection, ten were replaced and all were revised to various degrees, sixteen of them radically so. This work returned to the old-fashioned, pure style of ricercar. Fast note values and triple meter were not allowed to detract from the purity of style.
Frescobaldi did not obey the conventional rules for composing, ensuring no two works have a similar structure. However, both are written in a more traditional style that makes them appropriate for church use. This group of works is his only composition devoted to church music and his last collection containing completely new pieces. Almost all of the genres practiced by Frescobaldi are present within this collection except for the popular style.
The organ alternated with the choir on versets and improvised in a contrapuntal style. These toccatas served as preludes to larger pieces, or were pieces of substantial length standing alone. More variety is introduced with different rhythmic techniques and four organ pieces. Virtuosic techniques permeate the music and make some of the pieces challenging even for modern performers—Toccata IX from Secondo libro di toccata bears an inscription by the composer: "Non senza fatiga si giunge al fine", "Not without toil will you get to the end.
Although Frescobaldi was influenced by numerous earlier composers such as the Neapolitans Ascanio Mayone and Giovanni Maria Trabaci and the Venetian Claudio Merulo , his music represents much more than a summary of its influences. Aside from his masterful treatment of traditional forms, Frescobaldi is important for his numerous innovations, particularly in the field of tempo : unlike his predecessors, he would include in his pieces sections in contrasting tempi, and some of his publications include a lengthy preface detailing tempo-related aspects of performance.
Although this idea was not new it was used by, for example, Giulio Caccini , Frescobaldi was among the first to popularize it in keyboard music.
Frescobaldi also made substantial contributions to the art of variation ; he may have been one of the first composers to introduce the juxtaposition of the ciaccona and passacaglia into the music repertory, as well as the first to compose a set of variations on an original theme all earlier examples are variations on folk or popular melodies. Legacy[ edit ] Commemorative plaque at the birthplace of Girolamo Frescobaldi Contemporary critics acknowledged Frescobaldi as one of the greatest trendsetters of keyboard music of their time.
Bernardo Pasquini promoted Girolamo Frescobaldi to the rank of pedagogical authority. In popular culture[ edit ].
More by Girolamo Frescobaldi
His father Filippo was a man of property, possibly an organist, since both Girolamo and his half-brother Cesare became organists. In his early twenties, Frescobaldi left his native Ferrara for Rome. Reports place Frescobaldi in that city as early as , but his presence can only be confirmed by Between —13 Frescobaldi began to work for Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini. He remained in his service until after the death of Cardinal Aldobrandini in February
LA FRESCOBALDA GUITAR PDF