Indiana University Press

Music and the Early Modern Imagination

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Music and the Early Modern Imagination

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Beyond Boundaries

Rethinking Music Circulation in Early Modern England

Edited by Linda Phyllis Austern, Candace Bailey, and Amanda Eubanks Winkler

English music studies often apply rigid classifications to musical materials, their uses, their consumers, and performers. The contributors to this volume argue that some performers and manuscripts from the early modern era defy conventional categorization as "amateur" or "professional," "native" or "foreign." These leading scholars explore the circulation of music and performers in early modern England, reconsidering previously held ideas about the boundaries between locations of musical performance and practice.

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Mary, Music, and Meditation

Sacred Conversations in Post-Tridentine Milan

Christine Getz

Burdened by famine, the plague, and economic hardship in the 1500s, the troubled citizens of Milan, mindful of their mortality, turned toward the veneration of the Virgin Mary and the creation of evangelical groups in her name. By 1594 the diversity of these lay religious organizations reflected in microcosm the varied expressions of Marian devotion in the Italian peninsula. Using archival documents, meditation and music books, and iconographical sources, Christine Getz examines the role of music in these Marian cults and confraternities in order to better understand the Church's efforts at using music to evangelize outside the confines of court and cathedral through its most popular saint. Getz reveals how the private music making within these cults, particularly among women, became the primary mode through which the Catholic Church propagated its ideals of femininity and motherhood.

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Music and the Language of Love

Seventeenth-Century French Airs

Catherine Gordon-Seifert

Simple songs or airs, in which a male poetic voice either seduces or excoriates a female object, were an influential vocal genre of the French Baroque era. In this comprehensive and interdisciplinary study, Catherine Gordon-Seifert analyzes the style of airs, which was based on rhetorical devices of lyric poetry, and explores the function and meaning of airs in French society, particularly the salons. She shows how airs deployed in both text and music an encoded language that was in sensuous contrast to polite society's cultivation of chaste love, strict gender roles, and restrained discourse.

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Singing Games in Early Modern Italy

The Music Books of Orazio Vecchi

Paul Schleuse

In Italy during the late cinquecento, printed music could be found not only in the homes of the wealthy or the music professional, but also in lay homes, courts, and academies. No longer confined to the salons of the elite, music took on the role of social play and recreation. Paul Schleuse examines these new musical forms through a study of the music books of Italian priest, poet, and composer, Orazio Vecchi. Composed for minor patrons and the wider music-buying public, Vecchi's madrigals took as their subjects game-playing, drinking, hunting, battles, and the life of the street. Schleuse looks at how music and game-playing allowed singers and performers to play the roles of exemplary pastoral characters and also comic, foreign, and "rustic" others in ways that defined and ultimately reinforced social norms of the times. His findings reposition Orazio Vecchi as one of the most innovative composers of the late 16th century.

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Singing Jeremiah

Music and Meaning in Holy Week

Robert L. Kendrick

A defining moment in Catholic life in early modern Europe, Holy Week brought together the faithful to commemorate the passion, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In this study of ritual and music, Robert L. Kendrick investigates the impact of the music used during the Paschal Triduum on European cultures during the mid-16th century, when devotional trends surrounding liturgical music were established; through the 17th century, which saw the diffusion of the repertory at the height of the Catholic Reformation; and finally into the early 18th century, when a change in aesthetics led to an eventual decline of its importance. By considering such issues as stylistic traditions, trends in scriptural exegesis, performance space, and customs of meditation and expression, Kendrick enables us to imagine the music in the places where it was performed.

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