Music by Heinrich Schütz -
'... expressively at one with the music.'
Few composers in the history of music have expressed more admiration for their
teacher than did Schütz for Giovanni Gabrieli. He was not yet twenty-five
when he was first urged to visit Venice. Landgrave Moritz of Hessen-Kassel
informed him that 'a widely famed but rather old musician and composer, was
still alive'. He continued, 'I should not miss the chance to hear him and learn
something from him.' The Landgrave was prepared to finance a two-year visit.
Schütz, staying on longer at his parents' expense, was eternally grateful
for Gabrieli's instruction, of which the immediate fruit was a set of five-part
madrigals. Gabrieli died in August 1612, and Schütz indicates the strength
of their attachment: 'On his deathbed, as an indication of special affection,
he bequeathed to me one of his rings as a memento.'
Copyright © 7 April 2004
Robert Anderson, London UK