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Article

Giovanni Carli Ballola

revised by Roberta Montemorra Marvin

(b Alessandria, March 20, 1851; d Alessandria, May 2, 1894). Italian organist and composer. He began his musical studies with his stepfather, Pietro Cornaglia. From 1868 to 1871 he attended the Milan Conservatory, studying the piano with Antonio Angeleri and composition with Lauro Rossi and Mazzucato. His graduation exercise, the cantata Caino e Abele, won the first prize and a medal of honour. He toured abroad as a concert pianist, but from 1880 until his death was organist at the cathedral in Alessandria, where he also founded a school of composition, singing and piano, and conducted concerts for the Associazione filarmonica alessandrina. He composed three operas, Isabella Spinola (1877, Milan), Maria di Warden (1884, Venice) and Una partita a scacchi (1892, Pavia), the latter based on Giuseppe Giacosa's popular comedy. In these works, which did not have much success, Abbà Cornaglia remained uninfluenced by the innovatory tendencies of the ‘Scapigliatura’ and of Catalani and by the new ...

Article

John Bergsagel

(Schack Olufsen)

(b Brande, Jutland, April 9, 1893; d Copenhagen, Feb 17, 1949). Danish musicologist. After studying at the Royal Danish Conservatory of Music (1910–13), where he graduated as an organist, he was organist and choirmaster at the Luther Church (1914–24) and head of the music division of the Copenhagen Royal Library (1916–21). As a student he attended Hammerich's lectures in music history at Copenhagen University (there was no degree course in music history until 1915) and in 1917 he became the first MA in musicology in Denmark, graduating with a dissertation on the transition from Catholic to Protestant liturgy in Denmark in the 16th and 17th centuries. During his years at the Royal Library he began to study its large collection of Latin liturgical fragments on the basis of which he tried to reconstruct the Danish medieval liturgy and to provide a demonstration of Peter Wagner’s theory of the two traditions, Roman and Germanic, of Gregorian chant. He submitted this as a doctoral dissertation to the university in ...

Article

Roger Bowers

(b c1420; d 1497). English church musician. He was noted as a fine singer and skilful organist. After service in the household of Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester (until 1447), and as a lay clerk of Eton College (1447–51), where he was one of the four clerks specially responsible for singing polyphony in the college chapel, he became a clerk of the Chapel Royal in 1451, and Master of the Choristers there from 1455 to 1478. His duties included teaching the boys to play the organ and to sing plainsong and improvised polyphony; also it seems probable that he was instrumental in the introduction about this time of the use of boys’ voices in composed polyphony. The award to him in 1464 of a Cambridge MusB reflects his eminence in the musical profession – he is the earliest known recipient of this degree – while the patronage of Bishop Bekynton brought him valuable sinecures in the diocese of Bath and Wells. His last years were spent as a resident of Sanctuary Yard, Westminster Abbey....

Article

Robin Langley

(b c1749; d after 1794). English composer, organist and cellist. According to his recommendation by Francis Hackwood to the Society of Musicians, on 1 February 1784 he was 35 years old, married with two children, organist of Brompton Chapel and a competent violinist, viola player and cellist. He performed as a cellist in the Handel commemoration concerts in 1784 and played in the band for the Academy of Ancient Music during the 1787–8 season. He probably also took part as a cellist in the concerts (held annually) at St Paul’s Cathedral for the relief of the clergy in 1785, 1789, 1790, 1793 and 1795.

From his extant published works it can be seen that Adams was a competent purveyor of small-scale vocal and instrumental works in the manner of Haigh, Osmond or Reeve. His music shows an awareness of changing styles: the early songs and canzonets accompanied either by harpsichord or orchestra with obbligato instrument are in the manner of Arne, giving way to a symphonic style like that of J.C. Bach or Hook in the three sonatas of op.4 (for piano or harpsichord with violin or flute accompaniment); his late sonata for piano duet shows some grasp of larger forms, and ...

Article

Robin Bowman

(fl 1697–1706). Italian composer, violinist and organist, active in northern Europe. At one time he was in the service of the Prince of Carignan (a small town in the French Ardennes) and in this capacity appeared as a violinist before Louis XIV in 1697. About 1703 he was organist of the monastery at Kranenburg, on the present Dutch–German border. He published XII suonate a tre, duoi violini e violone col basso per l’organo op.1 (Amsterdam, 1703). One of the two surviving copies ( US-CHua ) bears the date 1706 on one partbook and the signature ‘Alberti’ on all four; a copy in Sweden ( S-L ) is also signed. The contents are all church sonatas, and each contains between six and eight movements, all in the same key. They are stolid, old-fashioned, rather uninspired works, competently written for the most part but using only the simplest imitative techniques and frequently becoming homophonic. The part for violone, which for Alberti meant ‘cello’, is sometimes quite elaborate, creating a genuine four-part texture....

Article

Stanley Webb

revised by Paul Hale

(Galpin)

(b Edenbridge, Dec 29, 1861; d Salisbury, Sept 11, 1947). English organist. One of the most able cathedral organists of his day, Alcock had the unique distinction of having played in Westminster Abbey at the coronation of three English kings: Edward VII, George V and George VI. After studying under Sullivan and Stainer, he was successively organist at the Chapel Royal, assistant to Sir Frederick Bridge at the Abbey, and then organist of Salisbury Cathedral for 30 years (from 1917 until his death). Much in demand as a recitalist, he was one of the famous ABC trio (Alcock, Thalben-Ball and G.D. Cunningham) who jointly opened the BBC Concert Hall organ in 1932. Two years later he oversaw the rebuilding, with minimal alteration, of the Salisbury ‘Father Willis’ organ at a time when many Willis organs were being completely revoiced. H.C. Colles wrote of ‘his finished technique, cleanness of phrasing and impeccable taste’; he made numerous recordings, many of which were reissued in the 1990s. He had considerable influence as a teacher at the RCM and composed a number of organ and choral works, now rarely performed. He was knighted in ...

Article

Lowell Lindgren

[‘Pippo del Violoncello’]

(b Rome, c1665; d London, c1725). Italian cellist and composer. He was mistakenly named ‘Filippo Mattei’ in Mattheson’s Critica musica (January 1723). He played at Rome in concerts and religious functions sponsored by Cardinal Pamphili (1685–1708), the church of S Luigi dei Francesi (1686–1711), Cardinal Ottoboni (1690–99), the Accademia del Disegno di S Luca (1702–11), Prince Ruspoli (1708–11) and the church of S Giacomo degli Spagnoli (1707–13). He joined the musicians’ Accademia di Santo Cecilia on 25 September 1690, was the organist at S Spirito in 1694 and a trombonist in the Concerto del Campidoglio beginning in 1702. He is called ‘Roman’ in the libretto for his oratorio Aman delusus (1699) and that of La stella de’ magi (1702) identifies him as a ‘virtuoso’ of Cardinal Ottoboni. He served as ...

Article

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 1567 he returned to Langres as vicar-general, a post that authorized him to speak for the bishop.

At the age of 62, Tabourot chose the anagrammic pseudonym Thoinot Arbeau and began to write. His first publication, an almanac of religious holidays titled ...

Article

Lavern J. Wagner

[Renverset, Jean]

(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, Due rose, is found in Josquino Persoens’s first book of madrigals (RISM, 1570²8). A chanson by him was published by Phalèse (RISM, 15754).

Jean d’Arras should not be confused with a younger man of the same name who was listed in 1596 as a mozzo de capilla (‘youth in the chapel’) to Philip II, and to whom further references occur in listings of chapel personnel in 1598, 1599 and 1608.

Vander Straeten MPB P. Becquart: Musiciens néerlandais à la cour de Madrid: Philippe Rogier et son école 1560–1647...

Article

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.

Barberiis’s ricercares, fantasias and canzonas, some of which are in two or three sections, are usually constructed from a succession of chords (often drawn from madrigals or dances) filled out and linked by ornamental passage work. One fantasia is a simple gloss upon a composition by Francesco da Milano. Book 4 (1546...