Gabrieli : Dialoghi Musicali - Liuwe Tamminga & Leo Van Doeselaar

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Giovanni Gabrieli: Canzoni, madrigali and Sonate for two organs by Liuwe Tamminga and Leo van Doeselaar

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In the present recording, the organists Liuwe Tamminga and Leo Van Doeselaar have selected eleven double-choir instrumental pieces (from Giovanni Gabrieli. This selection of eight-to-twelve-part pieces, performed on two of the most beautiful and suitable organs for this repertoire—the two magnificent organs of the San Petronio Basilica in Bologna (unfortunately no comparable organs have survived in Venice) — offers an excellent panorama of Giovanni Gabrieli’s double-choir compositions in the older (canzoni and madrigals) and newer (sonate) forms and styles of the two decades between the late 16th and the early 17th century in Venice.

Giovanni Gabrieli is one of these Venetian musicians who appears in all music history surveys, but who is actually much less well known than he deserves to be. Yet, he was one of the major organists of his time, who wrote in virtually all common vocal and instrumental musical genres, introduced new compositional techniques, worked in the most important Venetian sacred institutions after a sojourn in Bavaria, and trained some of the most important German and Italian composers of the early 17th century. Giovanni Gabrieli’s complete compositional output consists of about 250 compositions between madrigals, motets, instrumental canzonas and sonatas, and organ pieces (Intonazioni, Ricercari, Canzoni, Toccate, Fughe, and Fantasie). The printed collections of instrumental music that became best known were the Canzoni per sonare con ogni sorte di stromenti (Venice, 1608), and the posthumous Canzoni e Sonate (Venice 1615). Why such polyphonic compositions designated “per ogni sorte di stromenti” (for all sorts of instruments) are performed by two organists in this recording is a consequence of absolute common practice in the 16th and early 17th centuries.

PAS 1082