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Monteverdi - The Sixth Book of Madrigals - 02. O Teseo, Teseo mio

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By Claudio Monteverdi

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Woodwind Quintet, Brass Quintet - Intermediate - Digital Download
Composed by Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643). Arranged by Mike Lyons. Baroque Period, Renaissance. Score, Set of Parts. 27 pages. Published by Lyons Music Services (S0.258269).

Item Number: S0.258269

As part of my continuing project to transcribe Monteverdi's madrigals onto winds, here is the 6th book. In this book we see a much greater development towards dramatic representation. In a way, this book is divisible into two Scenes with a number of single items in between. The vocal lines are all much more complex and we can also see the beginnings of monodic writing appear in the semi-recit sections of some of the songs.

Also clearly developing are delineations of the voices into soloists and chorus. Several songs in this book are almost akin to arias, with clear soloistic writing for the higher voices (Cantus/Tenor).

The first four songs form a kind of introductory scena, which Monteverdi calls "Lamento d'Arianna". The second of these is "O Teseo, Teseo mio" which translates as "O Theseus, my Theseus. The young man is pleading with his lover to tell him that she wants him and he is referred to as Theseus in order to fit in with the common mythology of the time. Just as the women have Arianna, Daphne and Clorinda, so the men have Theseus, Clovis and various other mythological fantasies.

As with all things madrigalian, the lyrics are rife with double entendres.

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