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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, ...


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 ...


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 ...


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 ...