This volume is a multi-disciplinary study of the Neapolitan tradition of nineteenth-century song or "Canzona napoletana." It is based on primary (original music manuscripts) and secondary (correspondence, diaries, and varied historical materials) sources recovered from Neapolitan archives, libraries, and private collections. The book takes as its focus the figure of Guillaume Cottrau (1797-1847), a musician and publisher who left a significant breadth of original songs and arrangements issued in the song collection and series entitled Passatempi musicali. Cottrau was a cultural auteur, who integrated his diverse activities as editor, folklorist, and patron of salon music and musicians (including the commissioning of original works and adaptations) to establish a tradition of Neapolitan song. This repertory was disseminated throughout Europe and ultimately the United States to great acclaim through the publication of the Passatempi musicali. The songs presented in the Passatempi musicali remain within the international repertory affiliated with Neapolitan song, including "Fenesta vascia," "Lo guarracino," "Cannetella," and many others. They are, moreover, closely linked to the historical, cultural and linguistic identity of Naples and the Neapolitan diaspora. This volume is the first of its kind in the English language and offers original, unpublished research about the endeavors of Cottrau, the contemporary cultural environs, the artists and their music that established the international fame of the Neapolitan canzona.
Publisher: Lexington Books
Number of pages: 168
Weight: 399 g
Dimensions: 234 x 158 x 18 mm
"An impressive volume of essays, realized on primary music sources and personal correspondence, that documents the contributions of French-Neapolitan entrepreneur, composer, and editor Guillaume Cottrau to the history of Neapolitan songs with his collection of canzoni, Passatempi musicali, published in the first half of the nineteenth century. An important addition to the annals of Neapolitan song." -- Luigi Bonaffini, Brooklyn College
"The first full account on the origins of the Neapolitan canzone, a genre still alive and popular nowadays. A book that presents a rich interdisciplinary discussion of the fascinating repertory of Neapolitan vocal chamber music, as well as of the life and culture on nineteenth-century Naples at the dawn of music industry." -- Guido Olivieri, University of Texas Austin
"This book shows how even before the rise of the Tin Pan Alley music industry in New York City, Guillaume Cottrau created a model that had all the essential elements for the launching of a popular-song market that targeted the middle classes. This wonderful collection of essays helps us to better understand the early development and dissemination of Neapolitan song, its power to bridge highbrow and lowbrow musical and literary cultures, opera, salon music, art song, street song, the emerging international publishing market of sheet music, and the parallel development of the piano manufacture industry." -- Pierpaolo Polzonetti, University of Notre Dame