Label: BRILLIANT CLASSICS
Format: COMPACT DISC
Gaspare Torelli (1572–c.1613) was born to a family of officials and intellectuals, and as a young man he embarked on a religious career in his home town of Sansepolcro, becoming a monsignor in 1602. He was a music teacher, composer and poet and, with a thorough knowledge of Latin, he also penned a treatise on Italian grammar. The Amorose faville are the last in the series of extant musical works published by Torelli. The collection of 22 canzonettas dates from 1608, when it was published by Amadino of Venice. A single complete copy survives in the Kassel University Library, upon which Carolina Calabresi has based her modern edition published in Città di Castello in 2018. The canzonetta genre emerged between the second half of the 16th and the first decades of the 17th centuries. These are short polyphonic compositions, the earliest of which were not very elaborate but which over the course of time began to take on some features typical of the madrigal, including a more refined compositional technique and the use of imitation and syllabic declamation. The subject matter also grew broader, with bucolic and pastoral themes in the style of Petrarch added to the original stock of amorous tales. Also among the canzonetta composers was Claudio Monteverdi, who published his Canzonette a tre voci in 1584, at the age of 17. Torelli’s Amorose faville have a number of features in common with Monteverdi’s canzonettas including madrigal-like text painting. Here is the beginning of a style aimed at stirring the listener’s emotions and conveying musically the poetic imagery, an expressive urgency that would later lead Monteverdi to break the strict rules of traditional harmony and champion the theories of the revolutionary seconda prattica.