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Recent Researches in the Music of the Baroque Era

teven Saunders, general editor Steven Saunders, general editor

For over fifty years, Recent Researches in the Music of the Baroque Era has offered access to a vast store of music, much of it relatively undemanding technically. The many volumes in this series together represent all of the principal genres and compositional styles of the period 1600–1750.

The editions document the profligate variety that characterized the baroque era. Works from the early seventeenth century show the persistence across Europe of late Renaissance styles. Echoes of the stile antico, for example, are found in the masses of the Spanish composer Juan Bautista Comes, masses of the Venetian composer Natale Monferrato, and motets of Melchior Frank. Other volumes show how the traditional madrigal continued to flourish well after the turn of the seventeenth century, for example in works by Marco da Gagliano.

Of course, many editions showcase landmark works of monody and compositions in the concertato style—styles made possible by the invention of basso continuo accompaniment. Such editions include Giulio Caccini’s Le nuove musiche (which includes a full translation of Caccini’s important preface), Jacopo Peri’s Le varie musiche, and in the sacred sphere, Gregor Aichinger’s vocal concertos, the earliest significant German collection to include basso continuo.

Recent Researches in the Music of the Baroque Era has been notable for publishing scores of early opera, including Peri’s Euridice, Stefano Landi’s La morte d’Orfeo, Gagliano’s La Flora, and Juan Hidalgo’s Celos aun del aire matan, the earliest extant Spanish opera. The series has also taken a leading role in documenting the craft of women composers, presenting vocal music by Barbara Strozzi, motets by Chiara Margarita Cozzolani, instrumental and vocal works by Isabella Leonarda, and an opera by Elisabeth-Claude Jacquet de La Guerre

While many of the editions are devoted to a single work or collection, others explore a specific theme. One edition reconstructs the music heard at the dedication of St. Gertrude’s Chapel in Hamburg in 1607, while another includes settings of songs from Restoration performances of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Other such thematically organized volumes are devoted to concerted sacred music from seventeenth-century Bologna, settings of Racine’ Cantiques spirituels, and keyboard transcriptions from the Bach circle.

The series offers meticulously prepared editions that meet the requirements of both performers and scholars. All volumes in the series include critical reports, English translations of sung texts, and rich introductions that place the music in historical context and offer notes on performance practice. Performance parts are also available.


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