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May 17, 2010

Famous composer Donato da Cascia undoubtedly was an integral part of the Early Italian Renaissance period, that we know as Trecento. He created his music in the second part of the fourteenth century. As in many other cases related to that period, we know nothing about this famous composer, his life, his date of birth or death. So, I can only suppose that he was from Florence or a place called Cascia, near Florence, as his last name says.

The only picture that specialists discovered, shows him in the typical robes of the Benedictine order, so we may assume that he was a monk or a priest. But here lies the mystery: out all his surviving music, there is not even a bit of religious music. It is all completely secular. All the sources of his music with just one exception were found in Tuscany.

Jacopo da Bologna most likely had some influence on Donato da Cascia’s works. We know about most of Donato’s music, thanks to Squarcialupi Codex - the illuminated manuscript compiled in Florence, Italy in the early 15th century. Even though, his music was written in the typical style of mid 14th century, it has exceptional virtuosity. All surviving madrigals created by Donato da Cascia represent the peak of virtuoso singing.

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Posted: May 17, 2010 10:11am


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Ekaterina G.
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Delray Beach, FL, USA
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