Adriano Banchieri (3 September 1568 – 1634) was an Italian composer, music theorist, organist and poet of the late Renaissance and early Baroque eras. He founded the Accademia dei Floridi in Bologna.
He was born and died in Bologna. In 1587 he became a monk of the Benedictine order, taking his vows in 1590, and changing his name to Adriano (from Tommaso). One of his teachers at the monastery was Gioseffo Guami, who had a strong influence on his style.
Like Orazio Vecchi he was interested in converting the madrigal to dramatic purposes. Specifically, he was one of the developers of a form called "madrigal comedy" — unstaged but dramatic collections of madrigals which, when sung consecutively, told a story. Formerly, madrigal comedy was considered to be one of the important precursors to opera, but most music scholars now see it as a separate development, part of a general interest in Italy at the time in creating musico-dramatic forms. In addition, he was an important composer of canzonettas, a lighter and hugely popular alternative to the madrigal in the late 16th century. Banchieri disapproved of the monodists with all their revolutionary harmonic tendencies, about which he expressed himself vigorously in his Moderna Practica Musicale (1613), while systematizing the legitimate use of the monodic art of figured bass.
Banchieri's last publication was the Trattenimenti da villa of 1630. According to Martha Farahat he wrote five madrigal comedies between 1598 and 1628 with "plot and character development", starting with La pazzia senile of 1598, the last of them La saviezza giovenile.
References in modern culture
In 2008, a group of four composers including Lorenzo Ferrero and Bryan Johanson wrote a collaborative composition for organ and orchestra entitled Variazioni su un tema di Banchieri, which was first performed in Bologna on August 2 of that same year.
Performed by Sylvia Kind on a harpsichord of the type made in the early 20th century
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- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Banchieri, Adriano". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press
- Bonta, Stephen (Spring 1969). "The Uses of the 'Sonata de Chiesa'". Journal of the American Musicological Society (Richmond, Va.: American Musicological Society) 22 (1): 56. ISSN 0003-0139. JSTOR 830812.
- Farahat, Martha (1991). "On the Staging of Madrigal Comedies". Early Music History (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press) 10: 123–143. doi:10.1017/S026112790000111X. ISSN 0261-1279. JSTOR 942452. OCLC 8595852. Farahat's article concerns itself with the consensus among scholars that Banchieri's madrigal comedies were not intended to be staged but only for concert use, and some evidence that they were so intended; and a few related questions.
- LE SOURIRE DU MOINE - ADRIANO BANCHIERI DA BOLOGNA; Musicien, homme de lettres, pédagogue, équilibriste sur le fil des querelles du Seicento, Cinzia Zotti, Serre Éditeur, Nice, 2008.
- Adriano Banchieri, biographie de CInzia Zotti.www.noblessedelasne.org
- Free scores by Adriano Banchieri in the Choral Public Domain Library (ChoralWiki)
- Free scores by Adriano Banchieri at the International Music Score Library Project
- The Mutopia Project has compositions by Adriano Banchieri
- Contraponto bestiale alla mente (PDF - original version at classicaland.com)
- Original texts of Bertoldino and Caccasenno
- Audio of Six Sonatas played on a virtual organ