MADRIGALS ON TEXTS FROM PASTOR FIDO

Battista Guarini's "pastoral tragicomedy" Il Pastor Fido, which was written between 1580 and 1584 and first appeared in print in 1590, provided an exceptionally fertile source of madrigal texts. A great many composers active from the 1590s onward were inspired to set parts of the work to music; the total number of such settings (whether a cappella or concerted madrigals or solo songs) probably exceeds 500. This Web site aims to make available a wider selection of these settings than has heretofore been available in modern edition.

For additional background on Il Pastor Fido, click here. For a synopsis of the plot, click here.

The following madrigals on texts from Il Pastor Fido are available to be downloaded from the corresponding entries in the Master List of Composers:

Artusini, Antonio
Ah dolente partita (SSATB)
A setting of Mirtillo's anguished lament (Pastor Fido III/iii), by a little-known composer active in Ravenna. See also the versions by Monteverdi, Wert and Taroni.
Casentini, Marsilio
Care mie selve, addio (prima parte of 2) (SATTB)
A younger contemporary of Monteverdi, Casentini spent much of his career in the Friulian town of Gemona. His setting of Amarilli’s farewell to her beloved Arcadian woods, uttered at a moment in Pastor fido (IV/v) when she believes she is about to be unjustly put to death, underscores the poignancy of the situation.
O Mirtillo, ben fu misero (seconda parte) (SATTB)
Ch'i' t'ami (prima parte of 4) (SSATB) *NEW*
Casentini’s highly expressive and technically demanding four-section setting of part of Mirtillo’s increasingly desperate, and hopeless, appeal to Amarilli (Pastor fido, III/iii) compares quite favorably to Monteverdi’s version (q.v.), published four years earlier. Of the five partbooks of the print in which the work originally appeared, namely Casentini’s La Cieca: Madrigali a cinque voci ... libro quarto (1609), only three are known to survive, but the missing Canto and Quinto can be supplied by British Library MS Egerton 3665 (the “Tregian MS”). The MS copy is essentially untexted, making it necessary to reconstruct the text underlay for these two voices.
Ma che bisogna far cotanta fede (seconda parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
Deh, bella e cara (terza parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
Ma a chi parlo (quarta ed ultima parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
Cieco, Amor, non ti cred' io (prima parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
The first of a suite of four madrigals (here called scherzi) whose texts are taken from a scene in Pastor Fido (III/ii) in which Amarilli and her companions play the gioco della cieca, or game of Blind Man’s Buff (and Amarilli is “it,” the blindfolded one). As noted above, only the Alto, Tenore and Basso partbooks of the printed edition are known to survive, but the missing parts can be supplied by British Library MS Egerton 3665. Regrettably, however, only the first madrigal is to be found in the latter source, so that a complete edition of the work would entail the arduous task of reconstructing two missing parts.
Cruda Amarilli (SSATB) *NEW*
Casentini’s energetic setting of the speech that introduces the woebegone protagonist Mirtillo of Pastor fido (I/ii) is remarkable for its use of 6/4 chords, dissonances and angular melodic lines. Although written for five unaccompanied voices, the style is more reflective of the early baroque than the late renaissance. As in the case of “Ch’i’ t’ami” (see above), the Canto and Quinto parts are here supplied by British Library MS Egerton 3665 (the “Tregian MS”).
Cifra, Antonio
Cruda Amarilli (prima parte of 2) (SSATB) *NEW*
Antonio Cifra (ca.1584-1629), a prolific but little-known composer of the Roman school, is an interesting transitional figure between the late renaissance and early baroque. He produced four books of a cappella madrigals, as well as an abundance of sacred music in the concertato style. His setting of “Cruda Amarilli,” the speech that introduces the woebegone protagonist Mirtillo of Pastor fido (I/ii), is less tormented than Pallavicino’s (q.v.), and features a novel ending of the prima parte. A portion of the Tenore is missing in the sole surviving copy of the original, and has been reconstructed.
Ma grideran per me (seconda parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
Ma che bisogna far cotanta fede (SSATB) *NEW*
Cifra’s setting of part of Mirtillo’s increasingly desperate, and hopeless, appeal to Amarilli (Pastor fido, III/iii), from his Primo libro a 5. Madrigalists seldom set the same lines twice; however, Cifra recycled the text in his Secondo libro, this time as the seconda parte of “Ch’io t’ami, e t’ami più della mia vita” (q.v.).
Ch'io t'ami, e t'ami più della mia vita (prima parte of 2) (SATTB) *NEW*
Cifra again draws inspiration from Mirtillo’s impassioned speech to Amarilli (Pastor fido, III/iii); unusually, the seconda parte is an entirely different setting of a text he had used previously (see above). There is some nice word-painting in the prima parte and a distinctive descending chromatic motif in the seconda parte.
Ma che bisogna far fede cotanta (seconda parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
O primavera gioventù dell'anno (SSATB+b.c.) *NEW*
A later work by Cifra, with continuo and embryonic solo sections. The text is a setting of the opening lines of Act III of Pastor Fido; in terms of its affect, however, the piece seems to evoke more a rousing paean to springtime than a rendering of Mirtillo’s lovesickness and anguish. See also the setting by Monteverdi and the more extended one by Wert.
Croce, Giovanni
O Mirtillo, Mirtillo (SSATTB)
Croce's only known setting of a text from Pastor Fido (Act III Scene iv), being the opening lines of Amarilli's soliloquy lamenting the emotional harm she is compelled to inflict on Mirtillo.
D'India, Sigismondo
Cruda Amarilli (SATTB)
Sigismondo D’India (ca.1580-1629), who described himself as a “noble of Palermo,” may have spent his early years in Naples. By the time of publication of his Primo libro a 5, dedicated to Vincenzo Gonzaga, he was evidently associated with the Gonzaga court in Mantua, where he would have come into contact with Monteverdi. However, his setting of “Cruda Amarilli” (Pastor Fido I/ii), published just a year after Monteverdi’s (q.v.), would appear to have more in common with Gesualdo in its treatment of chromaticism and dissonance.
Quell'augellin che canta (SS A/T TB+b.c.)
By the time that D’India produced his Terzo libro a 5 (1615), the musical landscape had changed drastically. His “Cruda Amarilli” (q.v.), published only ten years earlier, is a late-renaissance work despite its daring and tortured musical syntax; by contrast, “Quell’augellin che canta” (Pastor Fido, I/i), although ostensibly a “madrigale,” could perhaps be better described as an early-baroque miniature cantata.
Ombrose e care selve (SSATB+b.c.)
In Pastor Fido, these lines are spoken by the ecstatic Ergasto (referring to Mirtillo’s miraculous reprieve from a death sentence, by virtue of the unexpected revelation that Mirtillo is indeed the “faithful shepherd” prophesied by the oracle, and thus the instrument for lifting the curse laid upon Arcadia, as well as being destined to wed Amarilli) to the uncomprehending Corisca (who believes Amarilli to be dead, and her ambitions of capturing Mirtillo’s affections about to be realized). Corisca’s abrupt and rude, though predictable, comeuppance ensues shortly thereafter.
Se tu, Silvio crudel, mi saettasti (prima parte of 5) (SS A/T TB+b.c.)
Published in 1624, D'India's formidable setting of this intensely dramatic Pastor Fido scene (IV/x) is somewhat reminiscent of Monteverdi's earlier work (q.v.), but at the same time it comprises a remarkable blend of disparate elements -- technically demanding declamatory passages, virtuosistic contrapunctal writing, and alternating solo and choral sections.
Ma se con la pietà (seconda parte) (SS A/T TB+b.c.)
Dorinda, ah dirò mia (terza parte) (SS A/T TB+b.c.)
Ferir quel petto, Silvio? (quarta parte) (SS A/T TB+b.c.)
Silvio, come son lassa (quinta parte) (SS A/T TB+b.c.)
Udite lagrimosi spirti d'Averno (SATTB) *NEW*
Many composers employed chromaticism and dissonance in setting Mirtillo's depths-of-despair lament (Pastor Fido III/vi), but D'India's extraordinary rendering pushes the envelope well beyond anything previously attempted -- and, indeed, not approached again until the late 19th century. The piece's remarkable harmonic excursions venture as far afield as b-sharp(!). Brian Mann has undertaken the challenging task of reconstructing the missing Alto, and has generously given permission to make his version available.
Del Mel, Rinaldo
O bella età dell'oro (SSATTB)
A beautiful setting of the initial lines of the Chorus that concludes Act IV of Pastor Fido. Del Mel masterfully captures the spirit of Guarini's young, innocent and unspoiled Arcadia.
Freddi, Amadio
Care mie selve, addio (SSATB+b.c.) *NEW*
A native of Padua, Freddi (1570-1634) was long associated with the musical establishment of the Basilica of St. Anthony in that city. His setting of Amarilli’s poignant farewell to her beloved Arcadian woods, uttered at a moment in Pastor fido (IV/v) when she believes she is about to be unjustly put to death, is notable for its tortured cromaticism at the words “disperata e dolente.” Freddi’s Secondo libro de' madrigali a cinque voci (1614), in which this piece appeared, includes both a cappella and continuo madrigals. See also the setting of the same text by Casentini.
Gagliano, Marco da
O misera Dorinda (prima parte of 2) (SATTB)
A setting of Dorinda's painful realization (Pastor fido, II/ii) that Silvio lacks any feeling for her. (He would rather spend time with his hunting dog.) The text was also set by Gastoldi in his Quarto libro (q.v.). See also the version by Ghizzolo. A native of Florence, Gagliano was associated with Peri, Rinuccini and the Caccinis; he is better known for his early opera La Dafne (1608).
Te sotto umana forma (seconda parte) (SATTB)
Gastoldi, Giovanni Giacomo
M’è più dolce il penar (SSATB)
Mirtillo pledges his steadfast devotion to Amarilli, despite Corisca's provocative advances (Pastor Fido, III/vi). The Alto has been reconstructed.
Com' è soave cosa (SSATB)
Corisca tries to insinuate that Mirtillo would be happier in her arms than to continue to pine after Amarilli (Pastor Fido, III/vi). I had originally reconstructed the missing Alto; however, it turns out that the piece was reprinted in a late (1610) anthology, which survives complete. Needless to say, Gastoldi's version of the Alto, given here, is better than my reconstruction.
Gastoldi, Quarto libro (1602) (complete)
Deh, bella e cara (prima parte of 2) (SSATB) *NEW*
A setting of part of Mirtillo’s impassioned, increasingly desperate, and ultimately unsuccessful plea to Amarilli not to reject him utterly (Pastor Fido III/iii). Monteverdi also set these two excerpts, together with the preceding “Ch’io t’ami, e t’ami più della mia vita.”
Ma tu, più che mai dura (seconda parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
O misera Dorinda (SSATB) *NEW*
A setting of part of an exchange between Dorinda and Silvio (Pastor Fido, II/ii), in which Silvio makes it painfully plain that he prefers the company of his hunting-dog to hers. See also the settings by Gagliano and Ghizzolo.
Arda pur sempre o mora (SATTB) *NEW*
From Pastor Fido III/vi, part of a lengthy exchange between Mirtillo, who remains steadfast in his commitment to Amarilli despite her rejection of him, and Corisca, who hopes to profit from the situation and insinuate herself into Mirtillo’s arms.
Cieco, Amor, non ti cred' io (prima parte of 4) (SATTB) *NEW*
A delightful suite of four madrigals whose texts are taken from a scene in Pastor Fido (III/ii) in which Amarilli and her companions play a gioco della cieca, or game of blind man’s buff. The transcription offered here attempts to re-create the original dance rhythms, although the reconstruction is admittedly speculative.
Ma tu pur perfido e cieco (seconda parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Sciolto cor fa piè fugace (terza parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Mira nume trionfante (quarta parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Dimmi, misero amante (SATTB) *NEW*
Corisca’s riposte (Pastor Fido, III/vi) to Mirtillo’s profession of his steadfast commitment to Amarilli (see also the setting of “Arda pur sempre o mora”).
O sfortunato e misero Mirtillo (SATTB) *NEW*
Mirtillo is devastated by the news that his beloved Amarilli is betrothed, and soon to be married, to Silvio (Pastor Fido, I/ii).
Come assetato infermo (SATTB) *NEW*
Prompted by Corisca, Mirtillo offers a bleak and despairing description of his state of mind following what he believes to be his final parting from Amarilli (Pastor Fido, III/vi). See the setting of “Tanto è possente amore” for Corisca’s reply.
Come in vago giardin (prima parte of 4) (SSATB) *NEW*
A charming extended setting of lines spoken by Titiro, father of Amarilli, to Montano, father of Silvio and chief priest of Arcadia, as the two ponder the fateful but enigmatic pronouncement of the Oracle (Pastor Fido, I/iv). A version transposed down a fourth is also available.
Ma s'allor non si coglie (seconda parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
Così la verginella (terza parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
E se vergogna il cela (quarta parte) (SSATB) *NEW*
Tu se' pur aspro a chi t'adora, Silvio (SSATB) *NEW*
Dorinda’s rebuke to Silvio (Pastor Fido, II/ii), whose only passion is for the hunt and the companionship of his dog.
Ciechi mortali, voi che tanta sete (SATTB) *NEW*
A setting of lines spoken by the Chorus at the end of Pastor Fido, II/vi. According to Guarini’s own commentary, the text represents a “moral digression against those who have become enamored of earthly things, and particularly riches,” and thus have lost the capacity for true love.
Tanto è possente amore (SSATB) *NEW*
A setting of lines spoken by Corisca to Mirtillo (Pastor Fido, III/vi), in response to his “Come assetato infermo” (q.v.).
Ghizzolo, Giovanni
O misera Dorinda (SATTB+bc) *NEW*
A setting for five voices, plus optional continuo, of an excerpt from Pastor fido (Act II Scene ii) in which Dorinda comes to the painful realization that Silvio lacks any feeling for her. A younger contemporary of Monteverdi, Ghizzolo was equally at home in the prima prattica of the late XVI c. and the seconda prattica of the early baroque. See also the versions by Gagliano and Gastoldi.
Cruda Amarilli (prima parte of 3) (SATTB+b.c.) *NEW*
Ghizzolo's setting of the lines in Pastor Fido that introduce the woebegone protagonist Mirtillo (I/ii) includes an impressively wide range of expressive devices, from intensely dissonant passages to rapid declamation to convoluted polyphony. Unusually, his setting is in three parti (the text of the terza parte is drawn from Mirtillo's lines later in the same scene).
Ma grideran per me (seconda parte) (SATTB+b.c.) *NEW*
Ma poich'era ne' fati (terza parte) (SATTB+b.c.) *NEW*
Care selve beate (SSATB+b.c.) *NEW*
A setting of the monologue that introduces the character Amarilli in Pastor fido (II/v), presenting her as a paragon of rustic simplicity and virtue (though capable of imagining a bit of chaste romance). The extended trio sections seem to highlight Amarilli's playful side. The underlay up to bar 16 conforms closely to the standard text, while the remainder is a kind of paraphrase, or perhaps a superseded variant.
Marenzio, Luca
Quell'augellin, che canta (SATTB) *NEW*
Marenzio's appealing rendition of Linco's exhortation to Silvio, to the effect that birds do it, bees do it, everyone but you does it (Pastor Fido I/i), follows the original text more closely than does Monteverdi's (q.v.), although Marenzio replaces the reference to Silvio with the less specific "Tirsi".
Cruda Amarilli (prima parte of 2) (SATTB) *NEW*
Marenzio’s setting of the speech that introduces the woebegone protagonist Mirtillo of Pastor fido (I/ii) is typical of the somewhat restless, edgy style of his late works. In the seconda parte, he eschews the temptation to indulge in vocal fireworks on the words “Ma grideran per me le piagg’ e i monti,” and reserves the main surprise for the end, in the form of remarkable chromatic passages.
Ma grideran per me (seconda parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Ombrose e care selve (SATTB) *NEW*
Marenzio's setting of Ergasto's rapturous outburst, spoken to an uncomprehending Corisca (Pastor Fido, V/viii). For more details, see the Notes accompanying the text/translation, as well as the description of D'India's setting of the same text. The piece contains sections in triple meter, for which Marenzio uses two different signs: O3 and 3, evidently to denote different tempi. Although there seems to be no justification in contemporary theory for doing so, for the O3 section I have elected to put the minims in sesquialtera proportion relative to C, while for 3 I have doubled the pulse of the minim.
Se tu, dolce mio ben, mi saettasti (prima parte of 3) (SATTB) *NEW*
Marenzio's setting represents an early attempt to render in music a dialogue (as opposed to a monologue or soliloquy) from Pastor Fido -- in this case between the gravely wounded Dorinda and the hunter Silvio, who has heretofore scorned her -- thus introducing a purposeful dramatic element into the madrigal idiom. Musically, however, the work relies heavily on a relentless homophonic texture and arioso-like writing, the effect of which is perhaps to offer less satisfaction to the listener than to the performer.
Dorinda, ah dirò mia (seconda parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Ferir quel petto, Silvio? (terza parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Ah, dolente partita (SATTB) *NEW*
Marenzio's setting of Mirtillo's grief-laden farewell (Pastor Fido III/iii) was published a year before Wert's (q.v.). Both pieces highlight the agonized, despairing quality of the text, but employ differing musical means to do so. For yet another approach, see in particular Monteverdi's later setting.
Deh Tirsi, anima mia, perdona (prima parte of 2) (S MS ATB) *NEW*
Marenzio's setting of Amarilli's wrenching soliloquy (Pastor Fido, III/iv), in which she laments the emotional harm that she is compelled to inflict on Mirtillo (whose name is here replaced by the more generic 'Tirsi'). The declamatory, arioso-like style is characteristic of his later madrigals. See also the setting by Monteverdi ("Anima mia, perdona").
Che, se tu sei ’l cor mio (seconda parte) (S MS ATB) *NEW*
Deh poich' era ne' fati (SATTB) *NEW*
Marenzio's setting of a short section of Mirtillo's extended exchange with Ergasto, comprising Scene 2 of Act I of Il Pastor Fido, in which Mirtillo laments his greatly diminished expectations regarding his beloved Amarilli.
Mezzogorri, Giovanni Nicolò
Cruda Amarilli (SSTTB+b.c.) *NEW*
Another setting of Mirtillo’s anguished opening speech (Pastor Fido, I/ii), by an early 17th-c. composer who was maestro di cappella at the Duomo of Comacchio, a small town east of Ferrara better known for its eel fishery than for its musical establishment. Nonetheless, the piece shows Mezzogorri to be a composer of some ability. No copy of the Canto partbook is known to be extant – various references to a copy in the Pogliaghi collection at the Biblioteca Ambrosiana in Milan are evidently in error – and the missing part is reconstructed here. Thanks are due to Grant Herreid for a number of helpful suggestions, which have been incorporated into the reconstruction.
Monteverdi, Claudio
Anima mia, perdona (prima parte of 2) (SSATB)
A setting of part of Amarilli's wrenching soliloquy (Pastor Fido, III/iv), in which she laments the emotional harm that she is compelled to inflict on Mirtillo.
Che se tu sei 'l cor mio (seconda parte) (SSATB)
Quell'augellin, che canta (SS A/T TB)
Monteverdi turns Linco's exhortation to Silvio, to the effect that birds do it, bees do it, everyone but you does it (Pastor Fido I/i) into a musical tour de force.
Ecco Silvio colei (prima parte of 5) (SSATB)
Monteverdi's most extended, and arguably most powerful, Pastor Fido setting -- a dialogue (Act IV Scene ix) between the gravely wounded Dorinda and Silvio, who has unintentionally shot her with an arrow while hunting. As a result of this unfortunate contretemps, Silvio undergoes a profound change of heart. (A version transposed down a minor third is also available.)
Ma se con la pietà (seconda parte) (SSATB)
Dorinda ah dirò mia (terza parte) (SSATB)
Ecco piegando le ginocchia a terra (quarta parte) (SSATB)
Ferir quel petto Silvio (quinta parte) (SSATB)
Ch'io t'ami (prima parte of 3) (SSATB)
A setting of part of Mirtillo's increasingly desperate, and hopeless, appeal to Amarilli (Pastor Fido, III/iii).
Deh bella e cara (seconda parte) (SSATB)
Ma tu più che mai dura (terza parte) (SSATB)
O primavera, gioventù dell'anno (SSATB)
Monteverdi somewhat shortens Guarini's text (Pastor Fido III/i), with the result that it loses some of its raw emotion and the piece becomes more of a musing on the "nature-is-so-beautiful-but-I'm-so-miserable" theme. For greater plumbing of emotional depths, see the more extended setting by Wert.
Ah, dolente partita! (SSATB)
The opening bars of Monteverdi's rendition of Mirtillo's grief-stricken leave-taking from Amarilli (Pastor Fido, III/iii) harken back to Wert's setting of the same text (q.v.), but the gut-wrenching emotional portrayal and formidable compositional complexity make the older master seem tame by comparison. (Transposed versions of this piece are also available.)
Cruda Amarilli (SSTTB) *NEW*
Monteverdi’s setting of the speech that introduces the woebegone protagonist Mirtillo of Pastor fido (I/ii) is featured prominently as the first madrigal in his Quinto libro a 5 (1605) -- possibly as a deliberate rebuke to the conservative music theorist Giovanni Maria Artusi, who had published a harsh critique five years earlier (when “Cruda Amarilli” was still in manuscript) of the “crude” and “barbaric” license taken by some contemporary composers. Without naming Monteverdi explicitly, Artusi cited no fewer than seven passages in “Cruda Amarilli” with which he took umbrage. However, Artusi was waging a rearguard action at a time when musical taste was evolving rapidly; by the time the Quinto libro appeared in print, the piece may have seemed less subversive.
M’è più dolce il penar (SSATB) *NEW*
Monteverdi's depiction of Mirtillo's grim resolve to remain faithful to Amarilli, despite Corisca's blandishments (Pastor Fido III/vi), seems musically less daring than other pieces in his Quinto libro; at the same time, bars 32-36 are noteworthy for their compositional complexity. The inverted chord at the beginning of bar 9 seems out of place, but it occurs in both the first edition of 1605 and the 1608 reprint. See also the setting by Gastoldi.
O Mirtillo, Mirtillo (SSATB) *NEW*
Monteverdi's setting of a poignant passage in Pastor Fido (III/iv), in which Amarilli laments the pain that she is unwillingly obliged to inflict on the jilted Mirtillo. Perhaps the excruciating dissonances on the word "crudelissima" (most cruel) shocked some contemporary ears. See also Croce's more leisurely and musically more traditional setting of the same text.
Pallavicino, Benedetto
Cruda Amarilli (prima parte of 2) (SATTB)
Pallavicino's masterful setting of Mirtillo's opening lines (Pastor fido, I/ii) begins with a remarkable series of dissonances and suspensions, although the remainder of the piece is less daring.
Ma grideran per me (seconda parte) (SATTB)
Deh dolce anima mia (SAATB) *NEW*
An extensively reworked version of Amarilli’s final parting words to Mirtillo at the end of Scene iii of Act III of Il Pastor Fido, in which the name of her unhappy lover has been replaced by more “generic” references (“anima mia”, “mio core”). Nonetheless, Pallavicino’s expressive setting underscores the poignancy of the moment.
Rognoni Taeggio, Francesco
Deh Tirsi, anima mia, perdona (prima parte of 2) (SSATB+bc) *NEW*
Rognoni's version of Amarilli's poignant Pastor Fido lament, altered to address a "generic" shepherd Tirsi rather than her beloved Mirtillo. Here the continuo part is obligatory, not optional. See also Marenzio's setting of the same text, as well as Monteverdi's "Anima mia, perdona."
Che se tu se'l cor mio (seconda parte) (SSATB+bc) *NEW*
Rossi, Salamone
Udite lagrimosi spirti d'Averno (SATTB) *NEW*
Rossi's setting of Mirtillo's depths-of-despair soliloquy (the opening lines of Pastor Fido III/vi) again displays the composer's skill at handling expressive dramatic text. See also the version by Wert.
Ruffolo, Lucrezio
Arda pur sempre (SMTTB)
Another setting of part of the lengthy dialogue between Mirtillo and Corisca (Pastor Fido III/vi), in which Mirtillo obstinately -- in Corisca's view -- maintains his steadfast love for Amarilli. Ruffolo was in the service of Ferrante II Gonzaga, Count of Guastalla.
Taroni, Antonio
Ah dolente partita (SSATB)
Another setting of Mirtillo's lament (Pastor Fido III/iii), by an early 17th-c. Mantuan composer, evidently influenced by Monteverdi
Verdonck, Cornelius
Vieni, dolce Imeneo (SSATTB)
A setting of part of the festive Chorus at the close of Pastor Fido (Act V Scene ix), celebrating the nuptials of Amarilli and Mirtillo. Verdonck, a Flemish composer active in both Antwerp and Madrid, published a volume of Italian madrigals in addition to sacred and other secular music.
Wert, Giaches de
Ah dolente partita (SSATB)
Wert's compact but powerful setting of Mirtillo's anguished lament (Pastor Fido III/iii). See also the settings by Monteverdi, Artusini and Taroni.
O primavera gioventù dell'anno (prima parte of 5) (SS A/T TB)
A gorgeous extended cycle which plumbs the panoply of Mirtillo's emotions as he awaits what will prove to be a disastrous encounter with his beloved Amarilli (Pastor Fido III/i).
O dolcezze amarissime d'amore (seconda parte) (SS A/T TB)
Ma se le mie speranze oggi non sono (terza parte) (SS A/T TB)
E s'altri non m'inganna (quarta parte) (SS A/T TB)
Oh lungamente sospirato in vano (quinta parte) (SS A/T TB)
Udite lagrimosi spirti d'Averno (prima parte of 2) (SAATB)
A setting of Mirtillo's depths-of-dispair soliloquy (the opening lines of Pastor Fido III/vi), at which point he has abandoned hope of a reconciliation with Amarilli and is vulnerable to manipulation by Amarilli's rival Corisca.
La mia donna crudel (seconda parte) (SAATB)
Cruda Amarilli (prima parte of 2) (SSATB) *NEW*
Much of the prima parte of Wert’s setting of the speech that introduces the woebegone protagonist Mirtillo of Pastor fido (I/ii) seems to offer the composer’s standard fare – until the introduction of an arresting series of downward chromatic passages. Furthermore, nothing prepares the hearer for the extreme ranges and prodigious leaps at the beginning of the seconda parte (all parts except the Alto span an octave and a fifth within a space of two semi-breves). Additionally, the piece, and especially the seconda parte, is a bit of a puzzle from the standpoint of transposition; according to one view, the use of chiavette with no flat in the signature would suggest a downward transposition of a fifth, but in such case the resultant disposition would be AATBarB. A more modest transposition would seem advisable. (A version transposed down a major second is available.)
Ma grideran per me (seconda parte) (SSATB) *NEW*

 

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