Wiener Aufführungen von Oratorien aus Ober- und dem nördlichen Mittelitalien 1665–1705 : zur höfischen Oratorienpflege unter den Habsburgern Eleonora II. und Leopold I.

Variant title
Viennese performances of oratorios from the northern regions of Italy between 1665-1705 : the cultivatin of the oratorio in the Habsburg court under Elenonora II and Leopold I
Source document: Musicologica Brunensia. 2014, vol. 49, iss. 1, pp. [43]-60
Extent
[43]-60
  • ISSN
    1212-0391 (print)
    2336-436X (online)
Type
Article
Language
German
License: Not specified license
Abstract(s)
More than anyone else, we have Empress Eleonora II of the ducal family Gonzaga of Mantua to thank for establishing oratorios in Vienna. After her husband, Emperor Ferdinand III, died in 1657, she founded her own orchestra, around which she spent nearly three decades building up a cultural center at the Viennese court. The exceptionally pious and artistically interested widow regularly had oratorios performed in her private chapel until her death. Several surviving sources, such as librettos, letters and ambassador reports attest to Eleonora's contribution to supporting this then still young genre from Rome. Her musicians' oratorio repertory included works either created at the imperial court or imported from Italy. Especially in the early years of oratorio performance in Vienna, complete compositions were imported from Rome at Eleonara's behest. As the years passed, more and more oratorios were composed in Austria, but the number of oratorios imported from the northern regions of Italy increased gradually as well. In the search for oratorios for the court, Ippolito Bentivolio, an art patron and librettist from Ferrara, was approached, whose Oratorio del giuditio with music by Giovanni Legrenzi was performed in Eleonora's chapel during the Lenten season in 1665. This work, which was performed again in 1668, was among the first oratorios of upper Italian origin sung in Vienna. That same year, the Empress had Oratorio di Baldasarre performed, which, evidence proves, was set to music by Giovanni Sigonfredi, a singer from Pesaro who was active in Venice. In 1682, the oratorio L'huomo infermo moribondo, which had already performed several times in Venice, was performed in Eleonora's chapel. The text was written by Pier Matteo Petrucci, who was Bishop of Jesi at the time, and was published in Macerate and Jesi in 1675 in his volume Poesie sacre e spirituali. The music was composed by Gioseppe Pacieri, who was organist in Santa Casa di Loreto until 1679. His composition can be found in Naples. In 1685, a further oratorio imported from Northern Italy was performed in Eleonora's chapel, namely La Rosinda. This is evidenced by an anonymous libretto for which two musical settings are preserved in the Austrian National Library, one composed by Carolo Francesco Pollarolo and the other by Giovanni Battista Tomasi. Another work preserved in the Austrian National Library composed by Tomasi, the Duke of Mantua's Maestro di Capella di Camera, is the oratorio Sant' Agata. The fact that his oratorios are present in Vienna likely reflects Eleonora's close contact to Mantua, her city of origin. After the Empress died in 1686, Leopold I continued to have oratorios performed and, like Eleonora, occasionally imported compositions from Northern Italy, including compositions by Giuseppe Fabbrini, Giovanni Legrenzi, Francesco Passarini, Galgano Rubini, Antonio Giannettini, Domenico Gabrielli and Francesco Gasparini. In 1705, the year the Emperor died, La morte del cor penitente, composed by the deceased Giovanni Legrenzi, was still being sung, thus bestowing upon him the posthumous honor of having a total of three oratorios on the court's performance program.
Document
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