Richard Lester: Masterworks and Miniatures for keyboard instruments - score

Richard Lester
Masterworks & Miniatures (2015)
for keyboard instruments
90-page A4 wire-bound sheet music
NMP 1015
ISMN: 979-0-708129-24-0

Compiled and edited by harpsichordist Richard Lester this 90 page volume of music contains 17 complete works by Girolamo Diruta, Claudio Merulo, Andrea and Giovanni Gabreli, Gioseffo Guami, and Antonio Mortaro. In an extended preface Richard examines the contemporary performance treatise and based on them suggests possibilities for correct period fingering, ornamentation and registration for these works.

The publication includes a 48 minute DVD Video, ‘Venetian Reflections’ in which Richard demonstrates the practical considerations of period fingering and ornamentation and includes several complete performances on both harpsichord and organ. The publication also includes the Nimbus CD recording NI 5931 of works featured in the publication performed by Richard Lester at the organ and harpsichord.

Girolamo Diruta (c 1554-c 1610)
Claudio Merulo (1533-1604)
Andrea Gabrieli (1532/33-1585)
Gioseffo Guami (1542-1611)
Antonio Mortaro (fl 1587-1610)
Giovanni Gabrieli (c 1555-1612)

Adrian Willaert (c 1490-1562)
Jacques Buus (c 1500-1565)
Annibale Padovano (1527-1575)
Andrea Gabrieli (1532/33-1585)
Claudio Merulo (1533-1604)
Gioseffo Guami (1542-1611)
Giovanni Gabrieli (c 1555-1612)

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Beautifully printed on substantial paper and spiral bound for maximum practicality, certain pieces are provided with an introducing text, some with fingerings, each with registration suggestions and some added ideas on ornamentation, though with the suggestion that this is also up to the performer. The imitative counterpoint of the ricercar can be seen as the forerunner of the fugue, and canzoni descended from secular songs which, as the booklet tells us, were capable of creating their own controversies when they cropped up in a religious context. Lester has been careful to mix his programme to deliver as much contrast as possible, using a variety of modes with their associated changes of mood, and alternating tempi and textures. A masterclass and entertainment in one. Dominy Clements, Composer

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