Barbara Strozzi

Feminale of Music

Painting of Barbara Strozzi

No composer of the baroque era publishes as many of her own works as she does, from her first book of madrigals at the age of 25 to a total of eight collections with over 125 individual pieces.

Her life's work mainly comprises chamber music, including arias, cantatas and madrigals in sparing instrumentation, making her a true expert on the love song, but always rejecting the opera. In the hope of one day obtaining a position at court, she dedicates all her printed compositions to high nobility – unfortunately in vain.

She was born in Venice on August 6, 1619 as the illegitimate daughter of Isabella Garzoni and adopted by the Venetian librettist Giulio Strozzi. Among her father's intellectual circle of friends consisting of Venice poets, musicians and composers were Claudio Monteverdi and Francesco Cavalli, who soon became aware of the musical talent of the young Barbara Strozzi. In addition to thorough training and singing performances at her father's soirees at the age of 15, she regularly presents her own compositions at the »Accademia degli Unisoni«, an academy that Giulio Strozzi founded especially for his adopted daughter.

For about 30 years her compositions have been played again in concerts and set to music on numerous CDs. Early music singers appreciate her arias and cantatas for their refinement and expressiveness.

Compositions

Che si può fare op. 8, published by France Musique: Artaserse Ensemble and Céline Scheen (soprano), recorded in Studio 104, 10.03.2019, presented by Clément Rochefort

Priego ad amore, released by Pegasus Early Music and NYS Baroque, recorded 04.11.2018

l'Eraclito Amoroso, published by Fieri Consort: Helen Charlston (Mezzo-Soprano), Toby Carr, Harry Buckoke, Aileen Henry

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