Murderous Madrigal Mayhem

Carlo GesualdoFor this playlist, we’ll focus on the eccentric works of a musician driven by lust and murderous revenge. No, not the current youth idol — he’s a very nice young man, quite incapable of these shocking deeds. And while the British Home Office might think that broadcasts of this artist’s work should be banned until after 9pm due to his reputation, BBC Classical radio would surely suffer as a result. We’re talking here about Carlo Gesualdo da Venosa, the late sixteenth century madrigalist, whose life has recently come under the pitiless scrutiny of a tell-all biography. Even more shocking than his life are Gesualdo’s brilliantly innovative madrigals - let’s listen to some of them to see why:

Sospirava il mio core — Alter Echo
Ecco, morirò dunque — The Monteverdi Choir
Io tacerò, ma nel silenzio mio — Gesualdo Consort
Itene, o miei sospiri — The Northwest Madraliers
Mercè grido piangendo — Madrigalisti dell’Ensemble Vocale di Napoli
S’io non miro non moro — Concerto Italiano
Beltà, poi che t’assenti — Meridian Arts Ensemble
Deh, come invan sospiro — Tafelmusik Baroque Summer Institute
Gia Piansi Nel Dolore — Robert Craft Ensemble
Mille volte il dí moro — Meridian Arts Ensemble
Moro, lasso, al mio duolo — The Deller Consort

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