The subject of Ottorino Respighis (Bologna, 1879 – Rome, 1936) vocal chamber music, less ambitious yet more genuine and varied (S.Martinotti) than the operatic one, has not yet been studied systematically, not even by the scholars and musicologists who have published many top-level essays on his music. The opportunity that is now offered does not consent a deep examination of the whole song production by Respighi, not according to the appropriate forms, a project that, one could say, is the lifelong dream of any musicologist devoted to the composers work. Nevertheless, I will take the challenge to study this subject and try to offer a listeners guide at the same time. Respighis art song production takes place in a controversial moment of the history of Italy during the first thirty years of our century: in those years this musical form, so popular especially in Germany, in Italy is suffocated by Operas spreading (Elio Battaglia). It is true that the German Lied and the Italian song are two musical forms of completely different type. While in Austria Hugo Wolf (1860 – 1903) devoted himself almost exclusively to Lied composing, in Italy the canzone was still considered as a secondary chamber music form, just an entertainment, mere occasional music in a few words.Download booklet
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