Adriano Banchieri (1568-1634)

One of the most famous figures in Italy’s musical history, Adriano Banchieri was born in Bologna on 3rd September 1568. He completed his musical studies in Lucca with Gioseffo Guami and became part of the Benedictine Olivetan Order, taking his vows in September 1590. In 1596 he was organist of the Monastery of St Michael in Bosco in Bologna; in 1600 he was transferred, with the same role, to the monastery of St. Mary in Regola in Imola. In 1604 he was in Gubbio, in 1605 in St. Helena in Venice and, in 1606, in St. Mary in Organo in Verona. After moving to the Abbey of Mount Oliveto to inaugurate the new organ built by Cesare Romani and to Milan to take part in celebrations in honour of St. Charles Borromeo, he finally moved to Bologna where there is everything one needs: good food, good air and good people. He promoted important musical initiatives through the foundation of the Academy dei Floridi and took part in important artistic exchanges with some of the leading musicians of the age, from Frescobaldi to Monteverdi. He dedicated a great deal of study to musical theory and to composing music for organ and voice. In old age he suffered from serious problems with his sight, so much so that he had to stop composing. He died in 1634 at the age of 66.

His versatile, multi-faceted personality led him to compose various piece for the theatre (La pazzia senile, La barca di Venetia per Padova and Festino nella sera del Giovedì grasso), sacred vocal collections (Concerti ecclesiastici, Pensieri ecclesiastici, ecc) and profane music (Libri di Madrigali), instrumental works (Canzoni alla francese a 4 v. per sonare, dentrovi un Echo & in fine una Battaglia a 8 dui Concerti fatti sopra Lieto godea… Libro se-condo [Venezia, 1596], Fantasie overo canzoni alla francese per suonare nell’organo et altri stromenti musicali a 4 v. [ivi, 1603], Moderna armonia di canzoni alla franceseop. 26 [ivi, 1612] ed altri brani per organo in svariate antologie), as well as writings aimed based mainly on Gregorian chants.

  Author's compositions


L'Organo Suonarino