The Italian Green Mountain Boy
2010 marks the 400th anniversary of Claudio Monteverdi’s Vespro della beata Vergine, the most spectacularly beautiful collection of hymns, psalms and setting of the Magnificat ever written. (For those keeping score, Monteverdi actually wrote two settings of the Magnificat that can be used in the Vespers).
The Vespro della beata Vergine is probably my favorite work in the repertoire and I pay homage with this blog’s name. Monteverdi is a touchstone composer for me. I’ve written about his operas in Time Out New York, will be writing a feature about the Vespers in an upcoming issue of Early Music America magazine, and even managed to visit his tomb in the Basilica S. Maria Gloriosa dei Frari in Venice.
As you can tell, Monteverdi is my boy so I don’t recommend performances or recordings of his music lightly. Attention must be paid to the cleverly named Green Mountain Project, (if you speak Italian you’ll know that Monteverdi translates to “Green Mountain”), a collective of “A” list early music specialists who will be presenting what may will be the first performance of the Vespro della beata Vergine in the anniversary year. If you are in the New York city area, I strongly recommend attending.
Full details can be found at