Early Music Seattle presents Madrigal Comedy: L’Amfiparnaso

“Be delighted to discover that there is a great deal of Marx Brothers and Monty Python in these scenarios and that the traditions of western comedy owe so much to these early Italian buffoons.”

Seattle, WA ­‑ Early Music Seattle presents, Madrigal Comedy: L’Amfiparnaso, written by Orazio Vecchi in 1597. This musical romp was produced by Early Music Seattle at the Moore Theater ten years ago. It combines ribald commedia dell’arte street theater with refined Italian madrigals. Directed by Arne Zaslove (stage director) and Theodore Deacon (artistic director) it was originally paired with Monteverdi’s Ballo delle ingrate to make a double bill, A Day on the Town, A Night in Hell. This reprise of L’Amfiparnaso is an opportunity to have public conversations about artistic works and the norms and values in play when they were conceived. How do we view these works and interpret them for our times? How might the art of our times be viewed by future generations?

Orazio Vecchi’s L’Amfiparnaso is a curious and entertaining side trip that late Renaissance composers took on the road to opera. L’Amfiparnaso is the most popular product of a genre known as the commedia harmonica. It is in essence a madrigal cycle or series of polyphonic vignettes that share common themes and characters culled from Italian commedia dell’arte. While there was a number of delightful madrigal comedies penned by such skilled composers as Adriano Banchieri and Alessandro Striggio, Vecchi’s L’Amfiparnaso is arguably the finest, the funniest, and the most cohesive of them all. This madrigal comedy is filled with humor, zany actions, masks, costumes and will have you laughing in delight.

This presentation is no charge with a suggested donation of &20. Go to earlymusicseattle.org to view performance.

Concert details:

Madrigal Comedy: L’Amfiparnaso
Saturday, April 17, 2021 | 7pm

View at https://earlymusicseattle.org/

Program Notes

English Translation

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