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Willaert, Adrian


Franco-Flemish composer who founded the "Venetian School"; b. Bruges, c. 1480; d. Venice, Dec. 7, 1562. After completing his musical studies in Paris with the Franco-Flemish master, Jean Mouton, he sojourned in Rome, then served as choir director to Duke Alfonso I d'Este at Ferrara (152225). In 1527 he was appointed choir director of St. Mark's in Venice, and he retained this important post for his remaining 35 years of life, training many illustrious composers who comprise the Venetian school. Willaert grafted northern polyphony onto the simple Italian madrigal, raising it to the level of the imitative motet; at the same time he continued to write uncomplicated native forms such as the villanesca. His experiments in chromaticism were to influence such students as vicentino, while another pupil, zarlino, derived from his polyphonic achievements the most complete analysis of late 16th-century counterpoint. Willaert's collection of polychoral psalms (1550) popularized this already existent style of composition and influenced later composers such as Andreae and Giovanni gabrieli to such a degree that the older master was even credited until recently with the invention of chori spezzati (scoring for two antiphonal choirs).

Bibliography: Opera Omnia, ed. h. zenck and w. gerstenberg. Corpus mensurabilis musicae, ed. American Institute of Musicology 3; Rome 1950. a. carapetyan, "The Musica Nova of A. Willaert," Journal of Renaissance and Baroque Music 1 (1946) 200221. a. einstein, The Italian Madrigal, tr. a. h. krappe et al., 3 v. (Princeton 1949) 1:318339. g. reese, Music in the Renaissance (rev. ed. New York 1959). Histoire de la musique ed. roland-manuel, 2 v. (Paris 196063); v.9, 16 of Encyclopédie de la Pléiade v.1 passim. p. h. lÁng, Music in Western Civilization (New York 1941). b. bujic, "Palestrina, Willaert, Arcadelt, and the art of imitation," Recercare 10 (1998) 105131. r. freedman, "Claude Le Jeune, Adrian Willaert, and the Art of Musical Translation," in Early Music History 13: Studies in Medieval and Early Modern Music, ed. i. fenlon, (Cambridge 1994) 123148. d. kÄmper, "Willaerts Quid non ebrietas, " Analecta Musicologica 10 (1970) 9193. g. m. lanfranco, "Miscellaneous Letters: Giovanni Maria Lanfranco to Adrian Willaert, 20, October 1531," in A Correspondence of Renaissance Musicians, ed. b. j. blackburn, e. e. lowinsky, and c. a. miller (Oxford 1991) 957971. a. smith, "Willaert motets and mode," Basler Jahrbuch für Historische Musikpraxis 16 (1992) 117165. a. wathey, "The Motet Texts of Philippe de Vitry in German Humanist Manuscripts of the Fifteenth Century," in Music in the German Renaissance: Sources, Styles, and Contexts, ed. j. kmetz (Cambridge 1994) 195201.

[e. r. lerner]

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