Sunday, October 22, 2006

Giovanni da Palestrina

Palestrina is a small town 23 miles east of Rome; ancient stone resting on a hilltop. Giovani Pierluigi was born in Palestrina during the 16th century - took it as part of his name - "da" meaning "from". First Question: why don't we do that anymore?
Palestrina was a medieval composer, pre-baroque, composing mainly polyphonic (intertwining harmonious melodies) religious chant. Most of his famous works are Masses, which traditionally consist of five parts: Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Benedictus, and Agnus Dei. You should be able to figure those out.
He has taken the place of Mozart as composer of the week. Sit down Mozart, were playing it old school now.
Apparently he composed Mass in and for St. Peter's for a large portion of his life, achieving great renown. Also, pertaining to his reputation, Bach's masterpiece Mass in B minor was inspired by Palestrina's Missa sine nomine.
My apartment bedroom sounds like a monastery.
I don't have a second question. Click on Palestrina's vague medieval smile to hear one of his compositions.

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