Masterworks & Miniatures:
Organ and Harpsichord Music from Renaissance Venice
Richard Lester, harpsichord & organ
This programme explores Italian keyboard music of the sixteenth century with works by Girolamo Diruta, Claudio Merulo, Andrea and Giovanni Gabreli, Gioseffo Guami, and Antonio Mortaro.
Total Playing Time 1 hour 18 mins
Masterworks & Miniatures
Discography Press Review
This particular recording brings together more or less familiar names who were associated with musical activity around the Basilica di San Marco in Venice during the 16th century. The sometimes complex timeline of which composer was appointed to which post and as successor to whom is all outlined in Richard Lester’s booklet notes. These go into the modes or scales used, choices in registration for the organ works, the composers and their music – all in a learned but accessible style, and all very much adding to the value of this excellent recording.
The introduction of the film provides plenty of Venetian atmosphere and historical context and, as with the booklet notes, Lester doesn’t compromise or talk down to us but manages to make what is a rather academic subject at the very least accessible, and for keyboard players, extremely informative and useful in the widest sense. It’s like having your own one-to-one master-class with the artist, and though it’s a passive one it is at least a session to which one can return at will.
Dominy Clements. Musicweb International