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Adrian Willaert
c.1488 - 1562
Belgium / The Netherlands
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A. Willaert
Adrian (Adriaen) Willaert (ca.1488/90 -1562), a Flemisch composer. He was born probable about 1488-1490 in Rumbeke near Roeselare. In his youth 1507 he went to Paris studied Law where he engaged the composer Jean Mouton and turned to the music. In 1511 he started to study music in Louvain.
Between 1515-1520 Willaert was singer Cantor in serving the Cardinal of Milan Ippolito I d'Este de Ferrara. From 1520-1525 he served Alfonso I d'Este, Duke of Ferrara there after from 1525-1527 he served Ippolito I I d'Este, sun of mentioned Alfonso I.
He stayed in Ferrara, Rome and Budapest.
During this period the first motets have been published in prestigious manuscripts and prints among others in the Codex de Medici in 1518 and in the Motetti novi e chanzoni franciose a quatro sopra doi Venice, 1520. In 1527 he was appointed Magister cappellae cantus ecclesiastice Sancti Marci, at the famous St. Mark in Venice, staying there until his death in 1562. From 1528 the famous Pierre Attaingnant/Paris published work from Willaert, so did all important publishers in Europe.
In 1542 and in 1556/1557 he travelled to his Flemish country and stayed among others in Bruges and in Antwerp. In 1550 Antonio Gardano published the famous psalms titled: Di Adriano et di Jachet. Isalmi appertinenti alli vesperi per tutte le feste dell'anno, parte a versi,et parte spezzadi accomoddati da cantare a uno et a duo chori. – psalms for separated choirs – following the poly choral idea with St. Mark’s. It was Willaert who divided the choral body into two sections, although he was not the first one, but he made the poly choral method famous. In 1559 was published Ars Nova which contains Madrigals and Motets. He passed away in Venice December the 7th 1562.
In St. Mark’s Willaert built up the choir’s reputation to considerable heights and a lot of distinguished pupils – among them De Rore, Buus, Porta, Vicentino, Parabosco, Cambio, Viola, Donato, Zarlino - got lessons from him. He was the founder of the famous Venetian school and he has to be considered as one of the most representative Flemish composers who moved to Italy and mixed up the Flemish style with the Italian style. His sacred music shows the contrapuntal and canon fluency seen by Josquin Des Prez. Of course he was influenced by his teacher Jean Mouton. His oeuvre consists out of: 9 (parody) Masses, over 175 Motets, Psalms, over 50 Hymns containing more titles, 2 Magnificats, and over 60 Chansons, about 55 Madrigals, Villanellas and over 21 Ricercares.
Author:Wim Goossens
Source:Willaert foundation Belgium, see: http://www.adriaenwillaert.be
Peccavi super numerum
Period:Early Renaissance
Composed in:1539c
Musical form:Motet a 5
Text/libretto:Latin
A motet from the Responsorium de Officium defunctorum for five voices (SAATB/ATTTB). The Peccavi super numerum is an old Responsorium. There are about 138 Responsories known used during centuries in the Office of the Dead. This setting for five voices by Willaert was published by Girolamo Scotto, Musica quinque vocum liber primus in 1539, Venice and in the same year by Peter Schöffer, Cantiones quinque vocum selectissimae, Strasbourg, Johann von Berg (Montanus) et Neuber, Quitus tomus Evangeliorum, Nuermberg, 1556.
Author:Wim Goossens
Spiritus meus attenuabitur
Period:Early Renaissance
Composed in:1539c
Musical form:Motet a 4
Text/libretto:Latin
The text used by Willaert is out of Lectio Septa de Officium defuntorum ad Matutinum in tertio nocturno, Lesson VII from the Office of the Dead Matins and is written for four voices (SATB). See the Liber Usualis page 1797. This Spiritus meus attenuabitur is published by, B. & O.Scotto, Motetti, libro secondo a quattro voci in 1539, Venice and by Antonio Gardano, Adriani Willaert musici celeberrimi, Venice, 1545.
Author:Wim Goossens
Libera me Domine, et pone
Period:Early Renaissance
Composed in:1539c
Musical form:Motet a 4
Text/libretto:Latin
The text for this Motet used by Willaert is out of Lectio septa Officium defuntorum ad Matutinum in tertio nocturno, Office of the Dead Matins and is written for four voices (SATB). See the Liber Usualis page 1797. This Libera me Domine, et pone is published as second part of the Motet Spiritus meus attenuabitur and is published by, B. & O.Scotto, Motetti. libro secondo a quattro voci in 1539, Venice and by Antonio Gardano, Adriani Willaert musici celeberrimi, Venice, 1545.
Author:Wim Goossens