Macque: Madrigali & Organ Works
Format: COMPACT DISC
Weser-Renaissance Bremen; Bellotti, Edoardo; Cordes, Manfred
Giovanni De Macque was a member of the last generation of Franco-Flemish composers during Europe’s early modern period. Although he is hardly known today, he enjoyed great esteem during his lifetime. The lion’s share of De Macque’s oeuvre is formed by madrigals for four to six voices. Moreover, he composed pieces known as madrigaletti (the diminutive refers to the smaller ensemble and the »lighter tone« of the content and the music), a collection of Latin motets for up to eight voices, and instrumental works, some of which are heard in a representative cross section on this release. All of the pieces heard here are from the Sesto libro de madrigali de cinque voci, which was printed in Venice in 1613, a year prior to De Macque’s death. The collection covers a broad spectrum of verbal and musical registers. The texts set to music draw on Arcadian mythological topoi and also treat moralizing and religious themes. Carefree delight and the vivifying power of nature as well as lover’s grief, despair, and sorrow – De Macque expresses all these feelings, situations, and impressions in his pieces. His madrigals may also be said to exhibit a considerable thematic and stylistic variety. His music for keyboard instruments also occupies an important place in music history and in particular significantly influenced the development of the seventeenth-century Neapolitan school.