"Truly Qualified": The Transnational Reception of Giovanni Rovetta's Music in Seventeenth-Century Europe
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Early modern Venice flourished artistically and musically as one of the most cosmopolitan cities in all of Europe, and the Basilica of St. Mark’s represented the visual and musical power of La Serenissima. Giovanni Rovetta, who moved from choir boy in childhood to the basilica’s maestro in adulthood, understood St. Mark’s reputation not only in Venetian life, but also as a model for European composers and musicians. As music director at St. Mark’s, Rovetta contributed to Venice’s musical esteem, joining a lineage shared by composers such as Claudio Monteverdi (1567¬–1643), Cipriano de Rore (c. 1515–65), and Adrian Willaert (c. 1490–1562). However, despite his recognition and influence during his lifetime, musicologists have frequently neglected both his compositional role in sacred music and his innovative and virtuosic contributions to secular repertoire of the early Baroque. This thesis project underscores Rovetta’s musical role in promoting Venetian fame for residents of the Most Serene Republic as well as in foreign contexts ranging from France, Rome, German-speaking lands, and Restoration England. This study first bases Rovetta’s patronage and reception among Venetian supporters of music. Next, this project contextualizes and analyzes Rovetta’s music within Franco-Venetian diplomacy in 1639. Turning to a rival city-state, this study examines Rovetta’s noble patronage from a Roman duke who continued in the tradition of musical patronage initiated by his Medici ancestors. Considering Rovetta’s music in educational resources in Protestant German-speaking lands, this project investigates the role Rovetta’s music played in educating Lutheran students in late seventeenth-century Saxony. The study concludes with an analysis of Rovetta’s music included in the personal manuscript collection of one of Restoration England’s most revered composers, John Blow. In all of these contexts, Rovetta’s music serves as a sonic transnational representation of Venetian power and prestige, thereby illuminating this overlooked composer in seventeenth-century musicological discourse.
Table of Contents
Introduction and literature review -- Giovanni Rovetta and the “Honor and Fame” of the most serene Republic -- Rovetts's secular music for Roman nobility -- Rovetts's Italian Catholic music in German Protestant contexts -- Rovetta as Italian exemplar for English secular music -- appendix A. Rovetta's published works -- Appendix B. Chapter 3 musical examples -- Appendix C. Chapter 4 musical examples
M.M. (Master of Music)