Below is a list of composers currently represented on this Web site. Clicking on a composer's name will bring up a list of madrigals available to be downloaded. Three downloads are available for each madrigal: Score (in PDF format), MIDI (.mid) and Text/Translation (also in PDF).

All downloads are free of charge; however, you must register with the site in order to download Scores and Texts/Translations.

Note that, in the case of madrigals in multiple sections, the full Text/Translation may be downloaded from the entry for the first section (the prima parte).

NOTE ABOUT MIDI FILES: Mac users are advised that Apple's QuickTime application no longer supports MIDI. However, MIDI files can be played on GarageBand for Mac, as well as on some third-party freeware programs. Alternatively, users can request MP3 files of particular pieces by contacting Martin Morell.

Aleotti, Vittoria
Arcadelt, Jacques (Giaches)
Artusini, Antonio
Bati, Luca, Primo a 5 (1594) (complete)
Bellasio, Paolo
Bertani, Lelio
Boschetti, Giovanni Boschetto
Caletti, Giovanni Battista
Califano, Giovanni Battista
Capilupi, Gemignano
Casentini, Marsilio
Cavaccio, Giovanni
Cifra, Antonio
Costa, Gasparo
Croce, Giovanni
D'India, Sigismondo
Dalla Casa, Girolamo
Del Mel, Rinaldo
Dentice, Fabrizio
Falcone, Achille
Felis, Stefano
Florio, Giorgio
Freddi, Amadio
Gabrieli, Giovanni
Gagliano, Marco da
Gastoldi, Concenti musicali a8 (1604/1610) (complete)
Gastoldi, Giovanni Giacomo
Gastoldi, Primo a 6 (1592) (complete)
Gastoldi, Quarto a 5 (1602) (complete)
Ghizzolo, Giovanni
Giovanelli, Ruggiero
Guami, Francesco
Guerini, Pietro Francesco
Ingegneri, MarcAntonio
Isnardi, Paolo
Leoni, Leone
Mancini, Curzio
Marenzio, Luca
Masnelli, Paolo
Massaino, Primo a 6 (1604) (complete)
Massaino, Quarto a 5 (1594) (complete)
Massaino, Terzo a 5 (1587) (complete)
Mezzogorri, Giovanni Nicolò
Monteverdi, Claudio
Mosto, Giovanni Battista
Nasco, Giovan (Jan)
Nodari, Giovanni Paolo, Madrigali a 5 (complete)
Pallavicino, Benedetto
Rognoni Taeggio, Francesco, Primo a 5 (1613) (complete)
Rognoni Taeggio, Giovanni Domenico, Primo a 5 (1605) (complete)
Rore, Cipriano (De)
Rossetti, Stefano
Rossi, Salamone
Ruffolo, Lucrezio
Sabino, Ippolito
Santini, Marsilio
Stabile, Annibale
Taroni, Antonio
Tomasi, Biagio
Tresti, Flaminio
Tresti, Secondo a 5 (1587) (complete)
Usper (Spongia), Francesco
Valmarana, Girolamo
Various (from Dolci Affetti, 1582)
Various (from Trionfo di Musica, 1579)
Vecchi, Orazio
Venturi del Nibbio, Primo a 5 (1592) (complete)
Venturi del Nibbio, Primo pastorali a 5 (1592) (complete)
Verdonck, Cornelius
Virchi, Paolo, Primo a 5 (1584) (complete)
Virchi, Paolo, Secondo a 5 (1588) (complete)
Wert, Decimo a 5 (1591) (complete)
Wert, Giaches de
Wert, Ottavo a 5 (1586) (complete)
Zanchi, Liberale
Zanotti, Camillo
Zoilo, Annibale

Venturi del Nibbio, Primo a 5 (1592) (complete)

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Title and DescriptionScoreMidiTranslation
Introduction and Commentary
The Introduction can be downloaded from the Translation column.
Usciva omai dal molle e fresco grembo (SATTB) *NEW*
Better known from Giaches de Wert’s charming setting (q.v.), this passage from Tasso’s Gerusalemme liberata was popular with other contemporary madrigal composers, including Gioseffo Guami, Stefano Raval and Antonio Dueto. Venturi’s setting makes subtle but effective use of word painting to highlight Tasso’s evocative description of night drawing on.
S’un sguardo un fa beato (SSATB) *NEW*
A somewhat cryptic commentary on a stolen kiss. The anonymous text was also set by Palestrina.
Nel mar del pianto mio (SAATB) *NEW*
A poem that borders on the bizarre, featuring a dolphin that disports itself in the protagonist’s sea of tears. It is hard to determine whether the text represents a parody of poetic conceits, or a clumsy but purposeful attempt to express them. Partly through the use of word-painting, Venturi manages to create an animated setting, the awkward text notwithstanding.
Picciola sì ma vaga (SSATB) *NEW*
A sprightly piece in praise of a “petite but charming” love-object, whose formidable powers exert an irresistible attraction on the protagonist. The text was also set by the Florentine madrigalist Santi Orlandi.
Occhi mirando mi togliesti il core (SSATB) *NEW*
A fairly conventional lover’s complaint to the effect that the love-object has spirited away his heart, and he will waste away unless she returns. Venturi incorporates (literal) “eye-music” by setting the word “occhi” (eyes) as two semibreves on the same pitch (a device also employed by Marenzio among others). The piece was subsequently reprinted in London with “Englished” text.
Ripensando al soave onesto sguardo (prima parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
The text is by Jacopo Sannazaro (1458–1530), an Italian poet, humanist and epigrammist. He composed numerous sonnets in the style of Petrarch, of which this poem is a good example.
Ma quel che ’l mio desir più dest’ ognora (seconda parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Tu sei vaga de’ fior Clori (SSATB) *NEW*
A text of unknown authorship, offering a variation of a familiar pastoral theme (cf. Marenzio’s “Donò Cinzia a Damone,” in which the shepherdess Cinzia offers the shepherd Damone a rose, leaving the latter to wonder “Why am I not worthy / To have the giving rose as a gift?”).
Superbi colli e voi sacre ruine (prima parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
A setting of a sonnet often attributed to the courtier, diplomat and humanist Baldassare Castiglione (1478–1529), although his authorship is disputed. The text attracted the attention of several other composers, including Giaches de Wert, Girolamo Conversi and Stefano Landi. Venturi’s setting combines a general gravitas with some tasteful word-painting.
Così se bene col temp’ un tempo guerra (seconda parte) (SATTB) *NEW*
Ride Clori e ’l bel guardo (SSATB) *NEW*
The protagonist expresses the hope that the alluring and wayward nymph Clori will someday be given her comeuppance by Cupid. Venturi incorporates some nice word-painting effects on “ride” (laughs) and “dardo” (dart).
S’io pallido e vermiglio (SAATB) *NEW*
A somewhat enigmatic text, of unknown authorship and not known to have been set by any other composer. Evidently the protagonist is describing an encounter with a woman whose fierce external aspect belies an inner off-putting apprehension. The opening of Venturi’s setting offers some remarkable harmonic progressions, moving (in modern terms) from an initial G-major immediately to E-major and going as far afield as B-major before cadencing on A-major in bar 5.
Quando l’ombre bramar, quando l’aurora (prima parte) (SAATB) *NEW*
The sonnet, together with its attribution to Rinuccini, is found in a 1638 publication comprising a sacred drama and a collection of spiritual verse by one Reginaldo Cecchini, a Dominican friar. Although both language and imagery are a bit strained, it is evident that the text is a meditation on spiritual or heavenly vs. earthly or carnal love, and thus Venturi’s musical setting can be regarded as a “spiritual madrigal.” It is a bit unusual for a religious-themed madrigal to appear in a collection of otherwise secular vocal music.
Non gli torment’ il cor gelosa cura (seconda parte) (SAATB) *NEW*
Occhi se lacrimare (SAATB) *NEW*
Another poetic text of unknown authorship, not known to have been set by any other composers. The general meaning is clear, although the language and imagery are somewhat labored. Musically the piece is complex; the first 20 or so bars progress through a series of modal ambiguities, accompanied by some deceptive cadences; the ambiguities do not fully resolve themselves until the cadence on (in modern terminology) A major at the end of bar 29.
È quest’ il dolce seno (SATTB) *NEW*
The protagonist praises his love-object’s physical charms and kissing abilities in somewhat awkward terms, which would probably not pass for acceptable amorous discourse today. Nonetheless, Venturi creates a musically interesting setting from this rather unpromising material.
Da me partend’ il core (SATTB) *NEW*
A variation on the theme of “lovers’ parting,” this one of unknown authorship.
In verde selva ov’ io (SSATB) *NEW*
A setting of a pastoral vignette, of unknown authorship. Presumably the meaning of the last line is that a flower is no substitute for the one who offers it – a sentiment that is also expressed by the protagonist of Marenzio’s “Donò Cinzia a Damone” (q.v.).
Baci amorosi e cari (SSATB) *NEW*
One of many paeans to the ravishing effect of kisses, this one notably brief and epigrammatic. The poem is attributed to “Cavalier de’ Rossi,” who may be the same personage mentioned in several of Torquato Tasso’s letters, and about whom nothing else seems to be known. The text (not to be confused with a poem by Battista Guarini with the same first line) was also set by Benedetto Pallavicino, Pietro Pace, Simone Molinaro and Amadio Freddi among others.
Cinzia i begl’occhi tuoi (SSATB) *NEW*
Similarly to No. 4 (Picciola sì ma vaga), the protagonist’s love-object is described as having formidable powers of attraction, of whose effects she is unaware.
Quell’aura che spirand’ all’aura mia (SSATB) *NEW*
Another text of unknown authorship, not known to have been set by other contemporary composers. The text contains untranslatable punning references to a love-object named Laura, who may or may not be the same as Laura Peperara (or Peverara), a member of the renowned concerto delle donne at the Ferrarese court and the subject of numerous poems by Torquato Tasso. An “Englished” version, whose opening line is “As Mopsus went her silly flock forth leading,”was included in the anthology Musica Transalpina the Second Book (London, 1597). The sense of the English bears scant resemblance to the Italian original.

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