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Article

Dennis Libby

revised by Emanuele Senici

(b Rome, June 29, 1801; d Rome, June 12, 1863). Italian musicologist and composer. Ordained a Roman priest in 1823, his life was entirely directed towards the deliverance of liturgical music from what he saw as the debased theatrical style of contemporary composers and the neglect and incompetence of singers and organists in regard to Gregorian chant and Renaissance music. He contributed most importantly to this goal through his editions, particularly the Raccolta di musica sacra (Rome, 1841–6), the seven volumes of which provided the first large modern collection of Palestrina's music. Palestrina was Alfieri's ideal for new church music, which, according to his Ristabilimento, should be grave, succinct and suited in expression to the words, which were to be presented clearly and with few repetitions. His own compositions, many of them published at Rome, exemplified these principles.

Alfieri was also a pioneer in Italy in the historical study of Gregorian chant, which he sought to restore to its original purity, although along lines that now appear somewhat arbitrary and subjective. His early ...

Article

Jocelyne Aubé

(b Barcelona, March 27, 1862; d Barcelona, March 31, 1908). Spanish composer, folklorist and music critic. He studied composition with Antonio Nicolau and Anselmo Barba and piano with C.G. Vidiella in Barcelona and was music critic for various journals there, including La renaixensa, L'avenç and, from 1905 to 1908, El poble català. He published his Collecció de 6 melodies per a cant i piano and five Cansons per cant i piano (both Barcelona, 1887), which are settings of poems by Angel Guimerá, Francisco Matheu y Fornells, Apeles Mestres and Jacinto Verdaguer. He illustrated the latter volume himself, and some of his work was displayed at an exhibition of the Sociedad de Acuarelistas in Barcelona. A distinguished folklorist as well as a sensitive composer and skilful melodist, he collected Catalan folksongs and published arrangements of 23 of these in Cansons populars catalanas (Barcelona, 1891). He used native rhythms and melodies in his songs and piano pieces (among them ...

Article

W.H. Husk

revised by David Johnson and Kenneth Elliott

(b Aberdeen, Oct 27, 1800; d Georgetown, British Guiana [now Guyana], July 28, 1843). Scottish musical scholar. The son of William Dauney of Falmouth, Jamaica, he was educated at Dulwich College, London, and at Edinburgh University. He was called to the Scottish Bar in 1823. About 1839 he left Scotland for British Guiana, where he became solicitor-general.

Dauney’s importance as a scholar rests on his book Ancient Scotish Melodies from a Manuscript of the Reign of James VI (Edinburgh, 1838/R), which consists of a partial transcript of the Skene Manuscript as well as a lengthy ‘Dissertation Illustrative of the History of the Music of Scotland’ and some historical documents, also transcribed. The manuscript, in mandore tablature, was compiled about 1625 by John Skene of Hallyards, Midlothian. It contains some 115 items of which over half are Scottish native airs, or folksongs, and the rest – Scottish, English, French, Dutch and Italian – comprise ballad tunes, dance tunes and partsong arrangements. In Dauney’s time it belonged to the Advocates’ Library in Edinburgh, now the National Library of Scotland (Adv.5.2.15). Dauney’s transcription was valuable in drawing attention to early, simple versions of such Scottish tunes as ...

Article

Hans-Martin Plesske

revised by Gunter Hempel

(b Strehla, Jan 24, 1782; d Reudnitz, nr Leipzig, Sept 30, 1864). German music publisher and bibliographer. After learning the trade he opened a retail music business in Leipzig in 1807 and soon extended this to a music publishing firm, to which he added a musical hire service and later a commission business. He was a close friend and the principal publisher of Heinrich Marschner, and for a time he promoted Schumann and Mendelssohn, published works by Berlioz, Chopin, Czerny, Clara Schumann and Friedrich Wieck, and issued songs and ballads by Loewe. Studies, didactic works and tutors for the popular instruments of the day were a prominent part of his publishing programme.

In 1817 Whistling published his Handbuch der musikalischen Literatur and Hofmeister published its successive supplements from the second (1819) and went on to produce further catalogues dealing with musical practice and music literature in German-speaking countries (from ...