Monteverdi: 7th Book of Madrigals / Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano

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With this recording of Book VII of Claudio Monteverdi’s madrigals (1619, Venice), Rinaldo Alessandrini and his Concerto Italiano devote themselves to a love theme with a very pastoral edge the composer particularly savored. The Italian harpsichordist and conductor once again offers us a collection of Monteverdi madrigals of the highest quality, in which the poems not only lead the singing, but also determine the arrangement of the madrigals by poet. Inspired by “the hitherto unpublished stamp of a literary intention” indicated by the composer at the start of the collection, Rinaldo Alessandrini and his ensemble, accustomed to enlightening dramatics, offer a sparkling polyphony varying from one to six voices, in a wide range of pitches.


Claudio Monteverdi’s Seventh Book of Madrigals have been recorded well by several early music groups, but one expects superior readings from harpsichordist Rinaldo Alessandrini and his vocal-instrumental ensemble Concerto Italiano, and indeed, one gets them here. He presents the madrigals not in the order in which they were published, instead grouping the texted pieces by poet. This points to the stylistic features an audience of Monteverdi’s time would have been interested in, and Alessandrini supports these features with readings that differentiate the pieces sharply from one another. This is an ideal recording of music by the later Monteverdi.

-- (James Manheim)

This is Book 7, but not as you know it. A must-read booklet essay by Alessandrini himself frames the new recording as a philosophical and dramatic undertaking rather than an exercise in completism. This is opera without the stage – a riveting and incredibly stylish account of this vast and varied book of music.

-- Gramophone

Product Description:

  • Release Date: January 06, 2023

  • Catalog Number: OP7365

  • UPC: 3700187673659

  • Label: NAIVE

  • Number of Discs: 2

  • Period: Renaissance

  • Composer: Claudio Monteverdi

  • Conductor: Rinaldo Alessandrini

  • Orchestra/Ensemble: Concerto Italiano

  • Performer: Monica Piccinini, Sonia Tedla, Elena Carzaniga, Andres Montilla, Valerio Contaldo, Raffaele Giordani, Salvo Vitale


  1. Madrigals, Book 7

    Composer: Claudio MOnteverdi

    Ensemble: Concerto Italiano

    Conductor: Rinaldo Alessandrini