Vienna and the Wiener Hofmusikkappelle

Featuring: soprano, tenor, violin, cornetto, 2 sackbuts, dulcian/recorder, violone, theorbo, organ

In the early 17th Century, the musical life in the major austrian courts had an impressive developement. Ferdinand II, who was still “Erzherzog”, started renovating and reorganizing the Musikkappelle in Graz. After becoming Emperor, he moved to Vienna bringing along all his fellows musicians from Graz, establishing a new Wiener Hofmusikkappelle, following the newest musical fashions and flairs. The protection and the financial ease that the Habsburgerhof was guaranteeing to his eployees made life in Austrian courts very attractive for musicians coming from foreign countries, especially from Italy. The marriage of Ferdinand II with Eleonora Gonzaga from Mantova contributed even more to the “musical migration” of italian Maestri to Vienna. The Hofmusikkappelle under Ferdinand II and later under Ferdinand III von Habsburg, experienced an impressive series of Italian “Kappelmeister” which brought to Vienna the newest ideas and experiments of the italian musical style. Giovanni Priuli from Venice, followed by another venetian Giovanni Valentini, then Antonio Bertali from Verona and Giovanni Felice Sances from Rome: italian masters lead for not less then 60 years the Wiener Hofmusikkappelle, who was hosting also extremely talented musicians like the violinist Giovanni Battista Buonamente, the lute player Marc’Antonio Ferro or the organist Johann Jakob Froberger from Germany, who previously studied for many years in Rome with Frescobaldi and Carissimi. Finally it was the famous austrian violinist Johann Heinrich Schmelzer which ended the italian hegemony, becoming Kappelmeister of the Wiener Hofmusikkappelle after Giovanni Felice Sances. In this program we explore the very particular musical style related to the Wiener Hofmusikkappelle: a style which was extremely complexe, powerful, and totally avanguarde.

Giovanni Battista Buonamente (1595-1642) Sonata a 6

Giovanni Felice Sances (1600-1679) Dextera Domini

Johann Heinrich Schmelzer (1620-1680) Canzon La Carolietta

Giovanni Felice Sances Excita furorem et memento belli

Francesco Cavalli (1602-1676) Alma Redemptoris Mater

Antonio Bertali (1605-1669) Sonata XII a 4

Giovanni Valentini (1582-1649) Kyrie Eleison, Christe Audi Nos

Giovanni Priuli (1575-1629) Egredimini filiae Sion

Francesco Cavalli Domine Jesu

Marc’Antonio Ferro (1600-1662) Sonata a 4

Johann Jakob Froberger (1616-1667) Alleluia Absorta es Mors

Antonio Bertali Sonatella a 5

Francesco Cavalli Requiem Aeternam

Photo @Susanna Drescher