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(fl 1546–87). Italian lutenist and composer. ‘Pestrin’ is Venetian dialect for ‘mill’ or ‘dairy’, and it has been thought that this may indicate his family’s occupation and Venetian origins; more recent evidence suggests that the name refers to his residence in Calle del Pestrin in the parish of San Stefano. He published at least seven volumes of solo lute music, of which only three are extant. A book of lute music by ‘Pestrin’, now lost, is listed in Vincenti’s catalogue of ...

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(fl Mantua, c1577–93). Italian harpist. He was one of a small number of Jewish musicians active in Mantua in the late 16th century. He appears to have been the grandson of Abramo dall’Arpa (not his nephew, as sometimes claimed) and, as his name implies, to have excelled as a harpist. His service for the Mantuan court may be dated from about ...

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Don Harrán

(d 1566). Italian musician. From his name it can be assumed that he excelled as a harpist. He is probably identifiable with the moneylender Abraham Levi, a prominent member of the Mantuan Jewish community. In 1542 he participated in a dramatic production at the Mantuan court, playing the part of Pan. He appears to have served the court under Duke Guglielmo in the 1550s and 60s. About ...

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(b Antwerp, c1554; d Antwerp, bur. Feb 27, 1604). Flemish lutenist, teacher and composer. He went to Rome to study in 1574, a visit that probably accounts for the Italian elements in his publications. He was a Protestant, but after the fall of Antwerp in ...

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Anthony Newcomb

(b Treviso, c1535; d Ferrara, June 15, 1615). Italian instrumentalist and composer. He came from a family of North Italian musicians that had lived in Treviso since the mid-15th century. His father was the town trumpeter; his uncle and brother were musicians in the courts of Ferrara and Munich respectively. He was one of the three young men brought to the newly founded Accademia degli Elevati in Padua in ...

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Arthur J. Ness

(b Kleve; fl Milan, 1536). German lutenist, viola player and composer, active in Italy. He apparently resided in Milan long enough to acquire the epithet ‘from Milan’ and to be counted among the foremost musicians and composers of that city. His extant music consists of two lute fantasias which first appeared in Giovanni Antonio Casteliono’s ...

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G. Yvonne Kendall

(b Dijon, France, March 17, 1520; d Langres, France, July 23, 1595). French cleric and dance manual author. Born Jehan Tabourot, son of Pierre Tabourot and Valentine Henriette Dubois, Thoinot Arbeau’s Burgundian family included noted writers and architects. His education in Dijon and Poitiers resulted in a law degree and a career in the church. After joining the Order of St Anthony, also known as the Confrérie de Saint-Didier, the order assigned him to the post of canon for the Department of Haute Marne, which included the dioceses of Dijon and Langres. His uncle Jean Pignard served this latter as cathedral composer and master of music. Later Tabourot was appointed parish treasurer and inspector for diocesan schools in Bar-sur-Aube. In ...

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Nigel Fortune and Tim Carter

(b Albano, late 1541 or 1542; d Florence, bur. Nov 14, 1612). Italian singer, lutenist and ?composer, husband of Vittoria Archilei . He was in the service in Rome of Cardinal Alessandro Sforza dei Conti di S Fiora, who died on 16 May 1581...

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Walter Pass

(b Cremona, 1550–60; d ?Prague, after1611). Italian composer and instrumentalist, active in Bohemia. From 1582 until 1612 he served at the imperial court at Prague, where there were other instrumentalists with the same surname, of whom the older Alberto Ardesi may have been his father. He published ...

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Lavern J. Wagner

(b Arras; d ?Madrid, 1582). Flemish organist active in Italy and Spain. On 1 January 1556 he was engaged at the ducal chapel of Parma. In 1580 he was organist in the chapel of Philip II of Spain, as is shown by a receipt that he signed for wages. His tenure there continued until his death. A madrigal by him, ...

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Emilio Ros-Fábregas

(b Ecija, province of Seville, c1460; d after 1524). Spanish poet, vihuelist and composer. He was one of the leading Castilian poets of the generation of Juan del Encina; one of his poems received a response by Pedro de Cartagena, who died in ...

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(b Brassó [Kronstadt], Transylvania [now Braşov, Romania], 1526–30; d Padua, Aug 22, 1576). Hungarian lutenist and composer. His biography, formerly founded on inadequate documentation and misconstruction of available facts, has been badly distorted; more recently discovered evidence and reinterpretation of received data allow a far more accurate story to be given. Bakfark’s family belonged to the German minority in Transylvania; the Hungarian form ‘Bálint’ for his Christian name, common in modern scholarship, is not found in contemporaneous sources. From ...

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Jeanette B. Holland and Arthur J. Ness

(fl Piacenza, 1554). Italian lutenist and composer. He is known only from his lutebook Intabolatura de lauto … di varie sorte de balli … libro primo (Venice, 1554; ed. G. Lefkoff, Five Sixteenth Century Venetian Lute Books, Washington DC, 1960). The dedication to Conte Honorio Scotto was signed in Piacenza. Most of the 14 pieces in the volume are familiar Italian dance forms: there are two paduana and saltarello pairs, a work based on the romanesca (...

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Arthur J. Ness

(fl Padua, c1545–50). Italian priest, composer, lutenist and guitarist. He composed or intabulated books 4, 5, 6, 9 and 10 in Girolamo Scotto’s ten volume series of lute tablatures (Venice, 1546–9), which also included tablatures by Francesco da Milano, Rotta, Giovanni Maria da Crema and Borrono. Barberiis’s name is absent from lists of prominent Paduan musicians of the time, and only two of his pieces were reprinted in later collections. At best, his five books preserve the practical repertory of a ‘sonatore eccellentissimo di lautto’ who had little or no formal musical training....

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Carol MacClintock and Dinko Fabris

(b ?Padua c1540; d after 1603). Italian lutenist and composer. Title-pages of his publications refer to him as ‘Padoano’. Padua was one of the centres of lute building and teaching. Barbetta's surviving lute books are among the most important Italian sources for the old six-course (‘second l'uso antico’) and new seven-course lute. The dedications of some of his publications to German aristocrats suggests connections with Germany (through German students at the University of Padua). His music was well known in northern Europe: ten gagliardas and two of the passamezzos from his first book (...

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Anthony Newcomb

(b Cento, c1550; d Nov 8, 1615). Italian instrumentalist and composer. Bassani was a renowned virtuoso of the viola bastarda. He entered the service of the Farnese court at Parma as a viola player on 1 November 1574. His service there was interrupted by a brief period with Cardinal Farnese in Rome in ...

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Carol MacClintock and Iain Fenlon

(b Piedmont, c1535; d c1587). Italian ballet-master and violinist. He went to France in about 1555 as leader of a band of violinists sent by the Maréchal de Brissac to Catherine de' Medici; soon he adopted French nationality and changed his name to Balthasar de Beaujoyeux. Beaujoyeux was not only a good musician and a competent violinist, but also a tactful and successful courtier who rapidly found favour with his French masters, serving successively as ...

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Jeanette B. Holland and Arthur J. Ness

(b Parma, Dec 19, 1522; d 1566). Italian lutenist and composer. The baptismal records at Parma indicate his place and date of birth (see N. Pelicelli, NA, ix, 1932, pp.112–29, esp.123). His one surviving publication, Libro primo d’intabulatura da leuto … con alcuni balli, napolitane, madrigali, canzon francese, fantasie, recercari...

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Michel Renault

(b in or near Le Mans, c1525–30; d after 1584). French lutenist and composer. According to La Croix du Maine (Les bibliothèques françoises de La Croix du Maine et de Du Verdier, Paris, 1772–3/R, ii, 11) he was working in Maine in ...

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Edward H. Tarr

(b in or nr Verona; d ?Munich, 1617). Italian trumpeter and writer on the trumpet. He was active as a trombonist in Schwerin from 1562 to 1565. From 1567 he was in Vienna and then from 1580 until his death he was chief court trumpeter in Munich. In ...