Gawain Glenton – The Myth of Venice: 16th-Century Music for Cornetto & Keyboards (2021) [FLAC 24 bit, 96 kHz]

Gawain Glenton - The Myth of Venice: 16th-Century Music for Cornetto & Keyboards (2021) [FLAC 24 bit, 96 kHz] Download

Artist: Gawain Glenton
Album: The Myth of Venice: 16th-Century Music for Cornetto & Keyboards
Genre: Classical
Release Date: 2021
Audio Format:: FLAC (tracks) 24 bit, 96 kHz
Duration: 01:01:48
Total Tracks: 20
Total Size: 1,16 GB


1-01. Gawain Glenton – Ricercar del XII tuono (02:52)
1-02. Gawain Glenton – Jouissance vous donneray (diminutions by Girolamo Dalla Casa) (04:09)
1-03. Gawain Glenton – Ricercar 13 (01:51)
1-04. Gawain Glenton – Ricercar 14 ‘Da pacem Domine’ (02:01)
1-05. Gawain Glenton – Ricercar del VI tuono (05:06)
1-06. Gawain Glenton – Pass’e mezzo antico (03:45)
1-07. Gawain Glenton – A la fontaine (diminutions by Gawain Glenton, after Silvestro Ganassi) (05:46)
1-08. Gawain Glenton – Ricercar 5 (02:07)
1-09. Gawain Glenton – Toccata 8 (06:01)
1-10. Gawain Glenton – Ricercar a 4 (03:33)
1-11. Gawain Glenton – Caro dolce ben mio (diminutions by Giovanni Bassano) (03:06)
1-12. Gawain Glenton – Toccata per organo (03:16)
1-13. Gawain Glenton – Toccata di salto cativo del VI tuono (02:17)
1-14. Gawain Glenton – Pavane ‘La venissiene’ (01:57)
1-15. Gawain Glenton – Introduxit me rex (03:45)
1-16. Gawain Glenton – Toccata del II tuono (01:51)
1-17. Gawain Glenton – El todescho (01:03)
1-18. Gawain Glenton – Il todeschino (02:08)
1-19. Gawain Glenton – Padoana del todeschino (02:01)
1-20. Gawain Glenton – La brillantina (03:01)


With the arrival of Adrian Willaert at St Mark’s Cathedral in 1527, Venice at last boasted a musician of international reputation to match its growing image as a ‘city rich in gold but richer in renown, mighty in works but mightier in virtue’. The establishment of Venice as the world leader in music publishing, and the coming and going of international musicians, made the Floating City anything but insular, and artistic competition was order of the day, with organists duelling to outdo each other in invention and grace; while on the streets a different culture of lively dances gave rise to more opportunities for instrumentalists to show off their improvisational skills.Intimate yet exuberant, scholarly yet unrestrained, Gawain Glenton and Silas Wollston’s exploration of the often dazzlingly virtuosic repertoire shows how the enduring ‘myth of Venice’ was built in sound just as much as it was in marble.

Gawain and Silas have been playing together for several years as part of ensembles such as The English Cornett & Sackbut Ensemble, In Echo, The Bach Players and the Taverner Consort. Recently we started giving recitals with the aim of pairing the cornetto with historical organs. The success of these recitals has made us want to do more, so we’re thrilled that Delphian Records have agreed to record this new venture. For this recording we are focussing on music from 16th-century Venice, specifically the period between Willaert’s arrival in the city in 1527 and the end of the century. These decades were arguably the most vibrant of Venice’s musical history, and it was then that the musical ‘myth of Venice’ was built in sound thanks to the compositions and virtuosic performances of composer/musicians such as Giovanni Bassano, Girolamo Dalla Casa, Gioseffo Guami, Andrea Gabrieli, Claudio Merulo, Parabosco, Padovano, Segni and others.

We’re based in England and are working within the restrictions of COVID-19, so we aren’t able to easily hop on a plane to record in the Veneto. However, we do have access to two very special organs based here in the UK. One is the Goetze & Gwynn reconstruction of the Italian chamber organ that formerly belonged to Sheila Lawrence and now resides in the English Organ School in Milborne Port, Somerset. This compact but powerful instrument has the distinctive metal principale and range of stops typical of Italian renaissance organs. We are very lucky to have it in the UK.

The second organ is made by the Italian maker Walter Chinaglia, and features open wooden 8ft and 4ft registers in cypress: the particular wood praised by Italians in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries as being able to produce an ‘organo suave’, the sweet-sounding organ ideal for the accompaniment of the human voice. According to Dalla Casa and others, the cornetto famously had the ability to imitate the human voice better than any other instrument, and much of its repertoire is in fact vocal music. So, what better way to accompany a ‘singing’ cornetto than a cypress ‘organo di legno’? (NB: If you want to know why we’re going to the trouble of using these organs rather than the ubiquitous stopped box chamber organ, check out this explanation by the wonderful Elam Rotem at Early Music Sources).

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