MARENZIO LUCA (1553-1599)
Motectorum Pro Festis Totius Anni, 1585 - vol. I
Musicological sources used for this work are drawn from two documents: the first printed edition of “MOTECTA / FESTORUM / TOTIUS ANNI / CUM COMMUNI SANCTORUM / QUATERNIS VOCIBUS / A Luca Marenzio nunc denuo / in lucem aedita: / LIBER PRIMUS / . . . Cum privilegio & Superiorem permissu / ROMAE apud Alexandrum Gardanum / MDLXXXV”, and a further reprint by Gerolamo Scotto in Venice on 1588. These motets, dedicated by Luca Marenzio to Scipione Gonzaga, one among his Roman mecenates, are based on texts taken from the antiphonae to Magnificat for the Office of Vespers. The anthology, beginning with the celebration of Our Lord Birthday, follows the liturgical cycle, ending with the Feast of St. Thomas (December 21st). The first 22 motets, out of 42, have been collected in this recording. The last 8 ones have been written for specific circumstances: in Festo Sanctorum Martyrum, in Dedicatione Templi, in Festo Mariae Virginis, and are included at the end of the recording. It is hard to assess stylistic identities between the cantus firmus of the gregorian antiphon, and the melodic material used by Marenzio: it is therefore remarkable the use of the gregorian fragment Gloria in excelsis Deo in the first motet, Hodie Christus natus est.