Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

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David Norton
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Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

Post by David Norton » Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:18 pm

The famous lute book of Vicenzo Capirola was compiled in 1517, exactly 500 years ago. Here is Ricercar VIII from that collection, played on an eight-string guitar made by Delcamp member Joseph Redman (hanredman).


Youtube



The Capirola collection is remarkable for the music, but moreso for the incredible artwork which surrounds the margins of many pages. The compiler of the book, a man named Vitale who was a student of Capirola's, said that he wanted to make sure that this book would survive the ages and not be lost, so he applied miniature painting of birds, animals, plants, and people on over half of the sheets. I had to opportunity (in 1999) to examine the manuscript directly, and the brilliance of the ink even five centuries later is astounding. Here are three sample pages:


capirola98-1.png
Cap3.jpg
Cap2.jpg
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David Norton
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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:48 pm

What super stuff and gorgeous images - especially love the imaginary animals! Are these pages available in full anywhere David? - and is that the Duarte edition you were playing from?
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

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David Norton
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Re: Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

Post by David Norton » Sat Sep 23, 2017 8:20 pm

Hi Stephen,

The full Capirola lute-book is available as a free PDF from here:

https://www.newberry.org/capirola-lute-manuscript

... and yes, that was Duarte's edition I was using for the video. Good eye, what with only a little of it showing on screen!
David Norton
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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:18 pm

That is the most amazing document, I got so carried away following the pictures of all the animals (and rather naughty looking satyr ...), utterly astonishing work. Has anyone made a complete transcription I wonder?

Well I've seen enough of those Universal editions to spot them at an angle ...
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

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David Norton
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Re: Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

Post by David Norton » Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:27 pm

Stephen Kenyon wrote:
Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:18 pm
Has anyone made a complete transcription I wonder?
Yes and no. There's a very detailed book by Otto Gombosi, "Compositione di meser Vincenzo Capirola", published by Société de Musique d'Autrefois in 1955, which has the entire book transcribed in keyboard staves (similar to Diana Poulton's 1974 Dowland book). Gombosi goes into exhaustive detail about Capirola's life and the few details known about his family from various tax records of the time. But I don't know of a guitar adaptation of the entire work. It's for a 6-course lute, so certainly it fits the guitar with no issue. Well, no issues other than some gawd-awful left hand stretches, unless you use a short scale guitar, or place a capo at 2nd fret.
David Norton
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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:35 pm

Sounds well worth tracking down - I'd certainly need plenty of help with the titles, the music text looks amazingly clear, esp compared to the various Elizabethan lute manuscripts.
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

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Bertran
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Re: Capirola, Vicenzo - Ricercar VIII (1517)

Post by Bertran » Sat Sep 23, 2017 9:41 pm

Thanks David,

Very educational and informative post in any case.
Amended with your lovely recording at beautiful guitar.
Love it ! :bravo:

Bertran II

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