Benvenuti in Elegia Classics

Psalmi vespertini a 8 voci (1648)

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Elecla 20077
Format: 1 CD
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Ensemble “Festina Lente”
Michele Gasbarro, conductor


Virgilio Mazzocchi (1597-1646)

About this album

Virgilio Mazzocchi was born in Civita Castellana, a small town in the province of Viterbo, in 1597. He received his first musical education from his older brother Domenico and, in parallel, he attended the local seminary for his studies in humanities. After receiving the tonsure in 1622, he was appointed maestro di cappella at Civita Castellana’s Cathedral and soon moved to Rome, where in 1623 he became maestro di cappella, first at Chiesa del Gesù, then at the Roman Seminary and finally, in 1629, at the prestigious Cappella Giulia of St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican. Here he succeeded Paolo Agostini, ‘one of the most witty and lively geniuses of the music of our times in every kind of harmonic composition’, from whom Virgilio learned the art of composing in the most varied and fashionable genres of the time, and above all in the polychoral style. It was in this genre that Virgilio Mazzocchi distinguished himself among contemporaries, giving to the ‘sbattimento dei cori’ (the dynamic dialogue of the choirs) a liveliness unknown before, so much so that years later Della Valle expressed his opinion on the Maestro as a ‘gran musicone’ (great ‘big musician,) due to his compositions with ‘twelve or sixteen choirs, with an echo choir in the dome



Dalla Biblioteca del Convento dei Ss. Silvestro e Martino ai Monti, Roma.

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