Various Artists – Alla Virtù della Sig. Maria Pignatelli – Unpublished italian baroque cantatas (2020)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/88,2 kHz | Time – 01:03:13 minutes | 1,08 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Claves Records
The Antoniana Library in Padua holds a manuscript called Cantate alla virtù della Signora Maria Pignatelli. A true vocal anthology of the early 18th century, this period canzoniere contains forty-eight secular cantatas, almost all unpublished, by seventeen composers from the great artistic centres that Italy had around 1700: Rome and the Papal States (Bologna, Ferrara, Ravenna), the Duchy of Milan, Naples, the Kingdom of Sicily, and Venice.
The manuscript contained (among other things) three questions that we were able to work on thanks to research funded by the HEM (University of Music) in Geneva and the IRMAS (Institut recherche Musique et Art de la Scène – Institute of Research on Music and Scenic Arts): 1) who was the dedicatee of the manuscript, 2) who could have been the author of the compilation, 3) when was the compilation made.
Originating from the ancient Kingdom of Naples, the Pignatelli family was one of the most illustrious families in Italy. It was divided into many branches, and it is on the Spanish side that our research brought new evidence as to the identity of Maria Anna Pignatelli (1689-1755)12. A native of Alcudia, Maria Anna Pignatelli is remembered for her love affair with the poet and librettist Pietro Metastasio as the second “Metastasian” Marianna. In 1709 she married Count Johann-Michael Von Althann in Barcelona and followed her husband to the Austrian court. A favourite of the Archduke Charles V, she was behind the success of Metastasia in Vienna, whom she brought in to replace Apostolo Zeno. Given this identity, the compilation cannot be dated after 1709, when Maria Anna was known as Countess of Althan, whereas the title of the manuscript only indicates the term Signora Pignatelli.
With eight cantatas, the Neapolitan Giuseppe Porsile is the most represented composer in the manuscript. Numerous biographical inaccuracies have long perpetuated a rather blurred image of this musician, of whom only one composition from his early Neapolitan period is known, the dramma per musica Il ritorno d’Ulisse alla patria (1707). Porsile was officially appointed Kapellmeister in Barcelona on January 1, 1708, and his career is troubling because it follows that of Maria Anna Pignatelli in a similar manner from Barcelona to Vienna. One of our research theories is that Porsile himself wrote this canzoniere for Maria Pignatelli, shortly before the young woman’s marriage.
1. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Poiché più dell’amore
2. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – E che più far poss’io
3. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Arianna infelice
4. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Non voglio più catene
5. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Lontananza non risana
6. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Ch’io t’adori o mia Clori
7. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Necessità di fato
8. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Va sospirando il core
9. Juliette De Banes Gardonne – Ch’io da te mi divida