Sigismondo D'India (1580-1629)
In 1615 the Venetian publisher Ricciardo Amadino issued Le Musiche a due voci di Sigismondo D’India, servitore del serenissimo et invittissimo Signor Duca di Savoia, & Capo della sua Musica di Camera. In doing so, Amadino undoubtedly felt certain that he was offering a product which would prove a commercial success, as had been the first book of monodies by the same author, published in Milan in 1609 “Appresso l’herede di Simon Tini, & Filippo Lomazzo, compagni”. The notoriety of the musician induced optimism: the “noble “Palermitano”, as he called himself in the first prints, had completed his apprenticeship in Naples and later in various cities of central-northern Italy. He had arrived on the scene of the new century demonstrating his abilities to maneuver excellently in all musical genres. His output ranged from the more traditional polyphonic madrigals (with the first and second books, both for 5 voices, published in 1606 and 1611, respectively) to the fresh and frothy villanelle alla napoletana (two books published in 1608 and 1612); from two collections of motets (both of which appeared in 1610) to the more weighty first book of monodies over a basso continuo (1609), thus trying his hand at the predominant musical genre of the time. The versatility of his muse, the quality of his writing, and perhaps the dedication of his first book of motets to Cardinal Maurizio di Savoia, all probably played a determinant role in procuring D’India the appointment of maestro della musica da camera at the court of Duke Carlo Emanuele I. Beginning on 1 April 1611, he entered into the service at the Savoy court, earning a yearly salary of 200 ducats. He remained in Turin until May 1623, at which time he left (for reasons which remain obscure), and resumed his wanderings in search of another stable and prestigious position worthy of his reputation. He entered first the service of Cardinal Maurizio before transferring to Modena, where he almost certainly died in 1629.