The printed debut of the canzone villanesca alla napolitana occurred on 24 October 1537, in Naples. Fifteen anonymous 'rustic songs' were published by Johannes de Colonia in a pocket-sized anthology with a cover featuring three women with hoes tilling the soil. The adjective villanesca (from villano or peasant) in the strict sense of the word means rustic or crude, but in this new context it also intimates that Neapolitan poet-musicians had been affected by the instinctive lyrical traditions of everyday people. The articles in this volume trace the Neapolitan origins of this song form, and its subsequent development as it spread quickly throughout Italy in a succession of editions published in Venice and Rome, providing a diverse repertory of lively songs to amuse the privileged that held and attended academies. Several studies focus on key figures in this process, notably Ferrante Sanseverino, Prince of Salerno, and Orlando di Lasso. At the same time the author relates these developments to the contemporary political context, notably the rivalry of Spain and France for control of the Kingdom of Naples.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction; The debut of the canzone villanesca alla napolitana; Musical and metrical forms of the canzone villanesca and villanella alla napolitana; Madrigali a tre et arie napolitane: a typographical and repertorial study; The Prince of Salerno and the dynamics of oral transmission in songs of political exile; Orlando di Lasso and pro-French factions in Rome; A colorful bouquet of arie napolitane; The salon as marketplace in the 1550s: patrons and collectors of Lasso's secular music; Guilio Bonagiunta: a composer with a progressive attitude; Orlando di Lasso et al.: a new reading of the Roman villanella book (1555); Erotic jest and gesture in Roman anthologies of Neapolitan dialect songs; Indexes.
’Donna Cardamone has been the leading expert on the canzone villanesca alla napolitana, a genre of Neapolitan song of popular character, for more than thirty years.’ Music and Letters