February 2009 edition

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In our program “De Profundis” (9 minutes and 5 seconds), Ars Antigua celebrates its lower range with performances of:

Spanish composer Diego Ortiz worked form 1555 to 1570 at the vice-regal court of the Duke of Alba in Naples. His treatise on viol playing is an astounding source of Renaissance ornamentation and improvisational practice. His techniques led to the English ‘divisions on a ground’ and the improvisatory viola bastarda style.

The cello in 17th century Venice came in two sizes–the violoncello, was rather larger than today’s standard cello and was used to play the more static bass lines of polyphonic music while the violoncino, being smaller was given to rapid virtuosic solo music. Marieta Prioli’s Balletto et Corrento is for this smaller instrument, and contains a rather acrobatic Corrento.