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Title: Arrogance or audacity? : The music of Sebastain Raval (?-1604) with an edition of his first book of motets
Author: Rodriguez-Garcia, Esperanza
ISNI:       0000 0001 2463 6386
Awarding Body: The University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2010
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The composer Sebastian Raval (?-1604) published seven music books between 1593 and 1600, featuring genres such as motets, madrigals, canzonettas, lamentations and ricercars. After some years in Urbino and Rome, he ended up his days as chapelmaster of the Royal Chapel in Palermo, being praised by his contemporaries. Nonetheless his output has received little attention in modem times. On the contrary, his participation in two musical contests (the first in Rome, in ca. 1592-95, with Giovanni Maria Nanino and Francesco Soriano; the second in Palermo, in 1600, with Achille Falcone) has become the main area of interest. He has been depicted as an arrogant individual, outrageously behaved in the contests with a manifest lack of capability as composer. This view has discouraged further examination of his music. Chapter 1 examines how this narrative started and evolved. It thoroughly reviews the events at the time and later on. The study reveals an overconfident personality when involved in contests, but also an overall positive view from most of his peers. Moreover it shows that the contests did not have any effect on Raval's reputation at the time. Interestingly, it proves that the accepted view in modem times was fabricated by Giuseppe Baini in his famous essay on Palestrina (Memorie storico-critiche della vita e delle opere di Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, 1828). Since then, it has been passed on and enhanced uncritically. Chapters 2 and 3 deal with the assessment of Raval's music in order to establish where it really stands. The research shows the composer's interest in experimentation, which results in an original and bold approach to composition. This interest plus his awareness of the most progressive tendencies of the time facilitated the transformation produced in hjs style, from a more traditional polyphonic writing in his beginnings to the concertato style adopted in his last book.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available