Cheetham, Andrew J. (2014) The Baroque Concertato in England, 1625–c.1660 Volume I & II. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.
Abstract

English concertato music of the seventeenth century has remained a relatively neglected area of musicological scholarship and has yet to receive the attention it deserves. More specifically, the period between the death of William Byrd (1540–1623) and the rise of Henry Purcell (1659–1695) remains something of a historiographical lacuna and is often disparaged for the decline in English musical standards. It is demonstrated in this dissertation, however, that in certain Royalist and court-related circles English composers were conversant in the stile nuovo and remained absolutely up-to-date with the latest Italian methods of composition. An attempt is made to construct a paradigm of influence that can be used profitably when considering the appropriation and assimilation of the techniques of the stile nuovo by English composers. The first composer to be examined in this dissertation is Richard Dering (1580–1620), who should be considered the progenitor of small-scale concertato music in England. The chief pioneer of Italianate sacred music in mid-seventeenth-century England, however, was George Jeffreys (1610–1685), who has been marginalised by traditional constructions of English music history. It is hoped that this dissertation is, in part, remedial, drawing attention to the significant achievements made by Jeffreys, while simultaneously promoting English concertato music. In the latter part of this dissertation the music of William Child (1606/7–1697), Henry Lawes (1596–1662) and William Lawes (1602–1645), Walter Porter (c.1587/c.1595–1659), and John Wilson (1597–1674) is considered in a series of case studies, all of whom demonstrate Royalist allegiances and a commitment to the stile nuovo. The complexities of the political and religious concerns of the period are also highlighted and detailed alongside the music of these composers.

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