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Article

Isabel Pope

revised by Tess Knighton

[Pere Joan]

(fl 1506–9). Iberian composer. A native of Barcelona, he became maestro de capilla at the cathedral there on 19 January 1506. By 1 March 1508 he was appointed singer in the Aragonese royal chapel of Ferdinand V. He appears to have stayed there less than six months and in summer 1509 he succeeded the theorist Juan de Espinosa as ‘master of music’ at Toledo Cathedral; he held this position for only about a year, after which his name disappears from the records. Three villancicos by him appear in the Cancionero Musical de Palacio. It is interesting that these songs are copied in close proximity to two pieces by Pedro de Lagarto, another composer active at Toledo Cathedral. At least one of Aldomar's songs, ¡Ha Pelayo, qué desmayo!, enjoyed considerable popularity: a four-voice version is found in a collection printed in Venice in 1556. His song style is typical of that of the villancico in about ...

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Article

Lawrence F. Bernstein and Eric Jas

(b c. 1515; d Kortrijk, shortly before 9 July 1556). South Netherlandish composer and choirmaster, probably originating from the town of Antoing (in Hainaut). Between 1527 and 1530 he served as a choirboy at the church of Our Lady in Bruges. After this he seems to have moved to Tournai, for this is where his wife Agnès du Piercourt died in August 1540. He was appointed as magister cantus of St James in Bruges on 14 September 1541. In 1543 Barbion left Bruges for Kortrijk (Courtrai) where he accepted a similar position at the Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk (‘Notre Dame’) on 12 April 1543, succeeding Pieter Maessens. In Kortrijk Barbion took charge of a musical establishment consisting of a singing school, an organist, and a choir of six men and four (later six) choirboys. Barbion died of the plague early in July 1556 leaving behind two underaged children, Pierson (born around ...

Article

Lawrence F. Bernstein

(b ?Cadéac; fl 1538–56). French composer and choirmaster. He was master of the choirboys in Auch, Gascony, according to the title-page of his Missa ‘Alma Redemptoris’ printed by Du Chemin in 1556. He must have been in Auch before this, however, for Bernard du Poey (Toulouse, 1551) mentioned him in a poem about the collegium there. In fact Cadéac may have spent his entire early life in Gascony, for he was probably born in the little seaport whose name he bears. The publication of his masses and motets may be viewed as part of a major attempt by the Parisian printer Du Chemin to disseminate the sacred music of provincial masters, in competition, no doubt, with the rival firm of Le Roy & Ballard, who in 1555 had brought out the most important surviving source of Cadéac’s music, Petri Cadeac musici excellentissima moteta, a book of 18 motets for four to six voices....

Article

Pierre M. Tagmann

revised by Iain Fenlon

(b Mantua; fl 1580–1608). Italian organist, choirmaster and composer. All that is known of his career associates him with Mantua. In 1580 and 1581 and between 1601 and 1608 Cantino served as organist at Mantua Cathedral, and it is known that in 1589 and 1590 he taught the clergy there. For the marriage celebrations in 1581 of Prince Vincenzo Gonzaga and Margherita Farnese, Cantino contributed an intermedio which is now lost; this was one of the ‘vari e bellissimi intermedi’ that, according to one witness, accompanied a comedy performed ‘con un bellissimo parato et una fortuosissima scena’. Cantino’s first (and only known) book of madrigals is dedicated to Duke Guglielmo Gonzaga of Mantua, and in 1588 he contributed to Alfonso Preti’s L’amorosa caccia (RISM 1588¹4), a collection entirely devoted to compositions by native Mantuans.

Article

(b Burgos, 1571). Spanish choirmaster. He was maestro de capilla at Burgos Cathedral from 1535 until his death. Hilarión Eslava (Breve memoria histórica de la música religiosa en España, Madrid, 1860; Lira sacro-hispana, Madrid, 1869) mistakenly suggested that he and Rodrigo de Ceballos were brothers and attributed to him several motets now known to be Rodrigo's. No music by him survives....

Article

Frank Dobbins

(fl 1568–76). French choirmaster and music editor. In 1568 he was maître de musique at the collegiate church of St André in Grenoble. By 1576 he had moved to Paris, where he worked for his friend Nicolas Du Chemin as an editor and as tutor to his three children. He appears as an editor in only one surviving print, Sonetz de P. de Ronsard, set for four voices by Guillaume Boni and published by Du Chemin in 1576. Evidently Boni was not satisfied with Chandor's work, since he obtained a privilege for a revised edition which was subsequently issued by the rival press of Le Roy & Ballard.

L. Royer: ‘Les musiciens et la musique à l'ancienne collégiale, Saint-André de Grenoble du XVIe au XVIIIe siècles’, Bibliothèque d’humanisme et Renaissance, 4 (1937), 237–75, esp. 246 E. Droz: ‘Guillaume Boni de Saint-Flour en Auvergne, musicien de Ronsard’, Mélanges offerts à M. Abel Lefranc...

Article

Donna G. Cardamone

revised by Kristine Forney

(b Valenciennes, c1520; d Antwerp, April 1582). Flemish composer and choirmaster. His revised birthdate is based in part on a document dated 1581 which claims that he was already grey or white (‘ja gris ou blanc’). According to a sonnet in his Chansons françoyses (Antwerp, 1581) Cornet travelled to Italy during his youth; in 1554 he was a bascontratenor at S Maria Maggiore in Rome. In 1559 he returned to Antwerp and married Jeanne Barbe, daughter of the kapelmeester of Antwerp Cathedral. In 1564 Cornet was appointed kapelmeester at St Rombouts Cathedral, Mechelen, and in 1572 he became kapelmeester at Antwerp Cathedral, a position he held until 1581 when the Catholic services were suppressed by the Calvinists. He sought unsuccessfully to enter the service of Archduke Ferdinand Karl of Austria and died shortly thereafter. In 1581 he published three volumes of music with the Plantin firm, assisted by generous subsidies from Antwerp statesmen and merchants. Cornet was active in literary and humanist circles surrounding the Plantin publishing house....

Article

(b ?Antwerp; d Elsinore, Nov 13, 1586). Danish composer, organist and choirmaster of Flemish birth. He is said to have left his native country because of religious persecution under Philip II, but he may have been invited to Copenhagen by the Danish King Christian III, who had good connections in other European countries. He was first named as an organist in the Danish royal chapel in April 1556; he was replaced in 1560, remaining at the court as the queen's organist. In 1563 he was appointed to the king's chapel by Christian's successor Frederick II, who held him in high esteem and granted him several benefices including two at Roskilde Cathedral. When the royal chapel was reorganized after the Seven Years’ War with Sweden, Fine was appointed sangmester on 5 June 1571. His long and faithful service was rewarded with a canonry at Århus Cathedral in 1583. Although little is known about his musical activities, he was responsible for the education of the choirboys throughout his career, and he must have organized the music for Frederick II's wedding to Sophie of Mecklenburg in ...

Article

Bonnie J. Blackburn

[Lanfranchinus][Gafori, Franchino]

(b Lodi, 14 Jan 1451; d Milan, 24 June 1522). Italian theorist, composer, and choirmaster. At home in both speculative and practical music, he was the first theorist to have a substantial number of his writings published, and his influence can be traced for more than a century, both in Italy and abroad.

Much of our knowledge stems from the contemporary biography by Pantaleone Malegolo, printed in the De harmonia: Gaffurius was born in Lodi to the soldier Bettino from Almenno in the territory of Bergamo and to Caterina Fissiraga of Lodi. He began theological studies early, at the Benedictine monastery of S. Pietro in Lodi Vecchio (where he was still present in September 1473) and was ordained priest in late 1473 or 1474. His first instructor in music was Johannes Bonadies (or Godendach); Malegolo implies that this was in Lodi, where he briefly returned to sing in the cathedral on Ascension Day, ...

Article

J. Bunker Clark

(b in or nr Worcester, c1558; d Windsor, Jan 24, 1634). English composer, organist and choirmaster. He was the son of William Gyles (d 1568), a parishioner of St Clement’s, Worcester, and a member of a well-known Worcester family. Thomas Giles, vicar-choral at St Paul’s Cathedral, London, was apparently not related. Nathaniel was probably a pupil of John Colden (d 1581), Master of the Choristers at Worcester Cathedral from 1569 to 1581; he was a witness to Colden’s will, and a beneficiary. Giles succeeded Colden at the cathedral until Michaelmas 1585, when he became Master of the Children, lay clerk, and one of the organists at St George’s Chapel, Windsor. On 14 June 1587, Giles married Anne Stainer at St Helen’s, Worcester. One of their sons (also called Nathaniel b 1591) received the DD and became a canon of both Windsor and Worcester....

Article

Lawrence F. Bernstein

(fl 1530–45). French composer and choirmaster. The only known biographical information comes from the title-page of his book of motets published by Attaingnant in 1545. It states that Le Heurteur was a priest, serving as canon and preceptor of the choirboys at St Martin, Tours. Virtually all his music appeared in Parisian or Lyonnaise prints between 1530 and 1545.

Le Heurteur’s surviving works include four masses, two Magnificat settings, some 22 motets and 26 chansons. A lost Attaingnant book of settings of texts from the Song of Songs mentioned Le Heurteur on the title-page and would no doubt substantially increase the corpus of motets attributed to him. All the masses call upon pre-existing material: the Missa ‘Impetum’, for example, is based on the anonymous motet Impetum inimicorum ne timueritis printed by Attaingnant in 1528 and the Missa ‘Ung jour Robin’ on Sermisy’s chanson. The Missa ‘Osculetur me’ may well be based on one of Le Heurteur’s lost motets on texts from the Song of Songs. His sacred music shows much variety in its contrapuntal style as well as reflecting the French predilection for a more harmonic orientation. In the masses and motets block-like chordal textures are interspersed with a host of contrapuntal procedures. Only rarely do these consist of relatively strict imitation; more often Le Heurteur’s counterpoint brings voices together in homorhythmic groupings or combines a fast-moving melody with a slower-moving ‘harmonic’ support. A comparison of the two ...

Article

Allan W. Atlas

(b Noyon, early 16th century; d Rome, 27–31 Dec 1573). French choir director and composer, active in Italy. The earliest known documents concerning his career indicate that he was a chaplain at S Maria Maggiore and the director of its Cappella Liberiana. As such, he may have had the young Palestrina in his charge. On 25 October 1545 Lebel became maestro di cappella at S Luigi dei Francesi, a position that he retained for 16 years until September 1561, when he was succeeded by Annibale Zoilo. His directorship was an extremely successful one; he managed to enlarge the chapel from a group of two adults and two boys in 1548 to one of seven adults and two or three boys in 1552. On leaving S Luigi on 4 September 1561, he joined the papal chapel; so great was his reputation that Pius IV issued a motu proprio waiving the usual entrance examination and in ...

Article

Allan W. Atlas

revised by Mitchell Brauner

( fl 1538–53). French musician active in Italy . From at least 13 June 1538 until 24 April 1539 he was director of the Cappella Liberiana at S Maria Maggiore in Rome. Among the singers in his charge was the young Palestrina, whom he probably taught. On 25 April 1539 Mallapert is listed as maestro di cappella at S Luigi dei Francesi, a post that he held for only seven months. On 1 December 1539 he assumed the directorship of the Cappella Giulia at S Pietro, a position he retained until 31 January 1545. From 1 October 1548 to late November 1549 he was maestro di cappella at S Giovanni in Laterano, and on 1 January 1550 he once again assumed directorship of the Cappella Giulia. Palestrina succeeded him on 1 September 1551. In August 1553 he was invited to take over the directorship of the choir at S Maria Maggiore. However, since the ...

Article

Allan W. Atlas

revised by Eric Jas

( b Cambrai, c 1475; d Cambrai, Sept 21, 1528). South Netherlandish choir director and composer . In 1485 he was an enfant de choeur at Cambrai Cathedral, where he remained as a singer until 10 October 1494. By the middle of the following year, he had become the director of the children’s choir at St Denis, Liège. He returned to Cambrai in 1503 and on 5 April assumed the directorship of the cathedral choir, replacing his former mentor, Denis de Hollain. On 23 April 1507 Pullaer was dismissed for neglect of his duties, but on 17 June 1507 he was appointed choir director at Notre Dame in Paris – a position he assumed on 22 December. In 1509 he received a benefice at St Germain-l’Auxerrois, while in 1514 he took part as a singer in the funeral office for Anne of Brittany. He remained at Notre Dame until 1527, when he returned to Cambrai as a canon of the cathedral. His ...

Article

Lawrence F. Bernstein

(b Noyon, early 16th century; d c1560). French composer and choirmaster. He succeeded Hughes de Caen as director of the Ancien Chapitre at Notre Dame on 5 August 1533 – an appointment offered him, however, only after a master from Clement en Auvergne and then Robert de La Rue had declined it. In 1539 Sohier took on additional responsibilities as canon of St Denis-du-Pas, later assuming the same post at Noyon Cathedral as well as a rectorship in Vincy. He took part in the synod of Noyon in 1546 and in the following year resigned at Notre Dame where he was succeeded by Nicolas Pagnier.

Mathieu and Valentin Sohier are often considered to be the same man on the basis, no doubt, of Du Chemin’s ascription of the Missa ‘Vidi speciosam’ to ‘Mathaeo Sohier’ in 1556 and to ‘Val. Sohier’ in 1568. Compelling reasons suggest that they are in fact two different composers. Attaingnant, the main printer of works attributed to Sohier, often distinguished between them by adding the appropriate initial ‘M’ or ‘V’, even in books that identify all other composers only by surname. The chansons he attributed to Mathieu invariably exhibit a complex, imitative texture with animated rhythms and abrupt, volatile melodies that have little in common with the standard clichés of Parisian chanson style. Those attributed to Valentin on the other hand, are short, chordal pieces – veritable stereotypes of the Parisian chanson. Most of the chansons attributed merely to ‘Sohier’ resemble Mathieu’s compositions stylistically....

Article

Bonnie J. Blackburn

[Spatarius, Joannes]

(b Bologna, ?26 Oct 1458; d Bologna, 17 Jan 1541). Italian theorist, composer, and choirmaster. His name comes from his family’s occupation: his grandfather was a merchant who dealt in swords. He mentions his age in two letters, which yield a birth year of 1458 or 1459; since he is not listed in the baptismal records, which go back to 1 January 1459, the year is probably 1458, and the day possibly 26 October, the date of two of his wills. Spataro never attended university and did not take holy orders; he may have continued his family’s profession until late in his life (he bequeathed a forge to his ‘compare’).

During the 1490s Spataro was on friendly terms with younger members of the Bentivoglio family: Antongaleazzo received the dedication of his Honesta defensio, and one of his lost treatises was written for Hermes, as well as two masses on pears (a pear appears on Hermes’s arms). Only in ...

Article

John M. Ward

(d after 1569). English choirmaster and ?composer . He was probably master of the singing boys of St Anthony’s Hospital, London, in 1557, and certainly, from 1561 to 1569, master of ‘the children of the grammer schoole in the colledge of Westminster’, where he succeeded Robert Lamkyns at an annual salary of £10. During the years of his association with the college the choristers engaged in occasional dramatic activities for which they and their master received monetary rewards: singing and playing in a Lord Mayor’s Day pageant, 1561; providing ‘speches and songes’ for the Ironmongers’ pageant, 1566; and presenting plays, including pieces by Plautus and Terence, at court in 1564, during Shrovetide 1566 and at Christmas 1568. Tailer not only trained the boys but may on occasion have taken part in the entertainments himself: when the boys played at Putney before Bishop Grindal in 1567, the choirmaster received 2s. to pay ‘for the conveiance of … his attyre fro London to puttneie and from thence to London againe’; another time the payment was for conveying the ‘Masters apparell and instrumentes’. Some time after ...

Article

Hans Joachim Marx

(b ?Neuenburg am Rhein, c1485; d Berne, spr. 1551). Swiss choirmaster and composer. In 1510 he arrived in Berne completely destitute, and obtained the position of choirmaster at Berne Minster, but gave it up in 1513 because of disagreements with the cathedral chapter. In autumn of the same year the council of the town of Fribourg appointed him choirmaster of St Nicolas and in 1515 to a similar position in the new collegiate foundation there. In the following years he joined the Fribourg humanist movement, together with Hans Kotter, organist of St Nicolas, and found like-minded friends in Zwingli and Glarean. At the movement's peak Wannenmacher was removed from office by its opponents, arrested and put on trial. At the urgent request of the council of Berne he was released and exiled. On 17 March 1531 Wannenmacher went to Interlaken where he was a magistrate's clerk until his death....