Diruta, Girolamo, celebrated Italian organist, teacher, and music theorist; b. Deruta, near Perugia, c. 1554; d. after 1610. He was a pupil of Zarlino, Costanzo Porta, and Claudio Merulo, the last of whom mentions the fact with pride in the preface of Diruta’s II Transilvano. In 1574 Diruta was in the Franciscan monastery at Correggio. He then was church organist in Venice (1582–93), at the Cathedral of Chioggia (1593–1603), and at Agobbio (Gubbio) Cathedral (1609–10). His II Transilvano is a valuable treatise on organ playing, the first work to treat the organ and its playing technique as distinct and separate from the clavier. It is in two parts, in dialogue form: Dialogo sopra il vero modo di sonar organi e istromenti da penna (Venice, 1593; further eds., 1597, 1609, 1612, 1625) and Dialogo diviso in cjuattro libri… il vero modo e la vera regola d’intavolare ciascun canto (Venice, 1609; 2nd ed., 1622). In his Musical Ornamentation, Dannreuther gives a thorough analysis of Diruta’s system of ornamentation. Vol. Ill of L. Torchi’s L’arte musicale in Italia contains a Ricercare and two toccatas for organ by Diruta.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire