- Qui musicam in se habet: Studies in Honor of Alejandro Enrique Planchart ed. by Anna Zayaruznaya, Bonnie J. Blackburn, Stanley Boorman
This volume is a tribute not only to a preeminent musicologist, but to a highly influential colleague, mentor, and teacher. Planchart is primarily a medievalist, so many of the contributions in this festschrift address that field, but even the outliers among its pages reflect the impact that Planchart has had on colleagues and former students who have pursued musicological subjects in other eras.
The festschrift opens with Fabrice Fitch’s discussion of his compositional homage to Planchart, Agricola IXa: Je nay dueil, for “solo cornetto muto.” Fitch notes that Planchart, too, is a composer, and a list of the dedicatee’s considerable body of compositions is given as part of a larger list of “Publications, Compositions, and Recordings by Alejandro Enrique Planchart” in the appendix. Following this homage, the editors have chosen to group the various contributions according to nine topics, all of which at one point or another have been the focus of Planchart’s own wide-ranging scholarship. The first two categories, “Chant Transmitted and Reformed” and “Cults,” reflect Planchart’s lifelong engagement with chant and its contexts. In a well-argued article, Angelo Rusconi demonstrates that the Old Milanese hymn for the feast of Saint John the Baptist, Alma prophetae, must be one of the oldest extant Ambrosian chants, dating from no later than the sixth century. James Vincent Maiello writes about twelfth-century Alleluias and their tropes at Pistoia, explaining the impetus to update this repertory at the Cathedral of San Zeno as part of a larger campaign to make that institution competitive with others nearby. Michel Huglo and Barbara Haggh-Huglo summarize what is known about the medieval procession for Saint Agatha’s feast day in the city of Florence. They correct a few details concerning the route of the procession after taking into consideration new building projects undertaken between the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, which were designed to accommodate the city’s growing population. Thomas Forrest Kelly discusses an unrhymed musical Office for Saint Donatus found in the fourteenth-century Bene ventan antiphoner I-BV MS 848. This composite Office contains a series of responsories that Kelly believes may be the earliest music written for that feast. James Grier questions whether text tropes for Saint Androchius preserved in F-Pn 909, a manuscript written for the monks at Saint Martin of Limoges, reflect actual liturgical practice at the abbey. The little-known repertory of seventeenth-century motets cultivated at the convent in Saint-Cyr, known as the Maison Royale de Saint-Louis, is the focus of Deborah Kauffman’s essay; and Rebecca G. Marchand explains Lou Harrison’s aesthetic response to the official guidelines regarding the composition of Catholic Mass music in the wake of Vatican II.
Following these, the reader will encounter entries for sections called “The Lives of Singers” and “The Lives of Songs.” Here, Evan A. MacCarthy has uncovered a letter from Pope Urban VI to the Count of Flanders, Louis II, which turns out to be an early request regarding the recruitment of northern singers to the Papal Chapel, predating Johannes Ciconia’s known presence in Italy by over a decade. Although no attributable music by the organist and canon known as Orpheus survives, Margaret Bent’s interpretation of the relevant archival documentation suggests that he probably did compose polyphony during his career in the areas of Padua and Vicenza during the late fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries. Jane Alden and David Fiala attempt to clarify the confusion surrounding the various musical and documentary references to persons named “Sohier” throughout the fifteenth century. Richard Sherr next explains the complicated, convoluted, but lucrative world of supplications and benefices, focusing on a series of such requests made by a group of Breton singers, most of whom either sang in the...