Giovanni Paolo Cima

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Giovanni Paolo Cima (c. 1570 – 1630) was an Italian composer and organist in the early Baroque era. He was a contemporary of Claudio Monteverdi and Girolamo Frescobaldi, though not as well known (then or now) as either of those men.

Cima came from a family of musicians and was a leading musical figure in Milan. From 1595 he served as director of music and organist at the chapel of Santa Maria presso San Celso in Milan. His Concerti ecclesiastici, a collection which also includes a mass, two Magnificat settings, and six sonatas for 2, 3, and 4 instruments, were published in 1610.[1]

Cima's church music was generally conservative, but his instrumental works were more innovative. His importance lies primarily in being the first composer to publish a trio sonata (for violin, cornett, and basso continuo), in his 1610 collection. It is a single-movement, through-composed work displaying thematic integration and virtuosic display.[2]

Cima died in Milan during the plague of 1630, at about the age of 60.[3] His son Giovanni Battista Cima is not to be confused with the painter Giovanni Battista Cima, called Cima da Conegliano, who was no relation.

Main works[edit]

  • 1599: Il primo libro delli motetti, for four voices
  • 1602: Ricercare per organo
  • 1606: Partito di ricercari & canzoni alla francese
  • 1610: Concerti ecclesiastici (Ecclesiastical concerti), for 8 voices, together with a mass, two Magnificats, and six sonatas with 2 to 4 instruments and basso continuo



  • Roche, Jerome, and Rodobaldo Tibaldi. 2001. "Cima Family: (1) Giovanni Paolo Cima". The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, second edition, edited by Stanley Sadie and John Tyrrell. London: Macmillan Publishers.

External links[edit]