Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 1.djvu/60

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48
ALBERT.
ALBANI.

red, almost brown, varnish, is more remarkable for power than for quality. He died at Botzen in 1673. His son, also named Mathias, was at first a pupil of his father, afterwards of the Amatis at Cremona, and finally settled at Rome. His best violins, which by some connoisseurs are considered hardly inferior to those of the Amatis, are dated at the end of the 17th and beginning of the 18th century. A third Albani, whose Christian name is not known, and who lived during the 17th century at Palermo, also made good violins, which resemble those of the old German makers.

[ P. D. ]

ALBENIZ, Pedro, born in Biscay about 1755, died about 1821; a Spanish monk, conductor of the music at the Cathedral of St. Sebastian, and (1795) at that of Logrono; composed masses, vespers, motetts, and other church music, never published, and a book of solfeggi (St. Sebastian, 1800).

ALBENIZ, Pedro, born at Logrono, 1795, died at Madrid 1855; son of a musician, Mattéo Albeniz, and pupil of Henri Herz and Kalkbrenner; organist from the age of ten at various towns in Spain, and professor of the pianoforte in the Conservatoire at Madrid. He introduced the modern style of pianoforte playing into Spain, and all the eminent pianists of Spain and South America may be said to have been his pupils. He held various high posts at the court, and in 1847 was appointed secretary to the Queen. His works comprise a method for the pianoforte (Madrid, 1840), adopted by the Conservatoire of Madrid, seventy compositions for the pianoforte, and songs.

[ M. C. C. ]

ALBERGATI, Count Pirro Capacelli, of an ancient family in Bologna, lived in the end of the 17th and beginning of the 18th centuries, an amateur, and distinguished composer. His works include the operas 'Gli Amici' (1699), 'Il Principe selvaggio' (1712), the oratorio 'Giobbe' (Bologna, 1688), sacred cantatas, masses, motetts, etc., and compositions for various instruments.

ALBERT, Heinrich, born at Lobenstein, Voigtland, Saxony, June 28, 1604; nephew and apparently pupil of the famous composer Heinrich Schütz. He studied law in Leipsic, and music in Dresden. In 1626 he went to Königsberg, where Stobbaeus was at that time kapellmeister. In 1631 he became organist to the old church in that city, and in 1638 married Elizabeth Starke, who is referred to in his poem as 'Philosette.' Of the date of his death nothing certain is known. It is given as June 27, 1657 (by Fetis Oct. 10, 1651). One of his books of 'Arien' (Konigsberg, 1654), contains a statement that it was 'edited by the author's widow,' but the same book comprises some poems on the events of the year 1655. It is plain therefore that the date 1654 is an error.

Albert was at once poet, organist and composer. As poet he is one of the representatives of the Königsberg school, with the heads of which he was closely associated.

His church music is confined, according to Winterfeld, to a Te Deum for three voices, published Sept. 12, 1647. He however composed both words and music to many hymns, which are still in private use, e.g. 'Gott des Himmels und der Erden.' These, as well as his secular songs, are found in the eight collections printed for him by Paschen, Mense, and Reussner, under the patronage of the Emperor of Germany, the King of Poland, and the Kurfürst of Brandenburg. These collections sold so rapidly that of some of them several editions were published by the author. Others were surreptitiously issued at Königsberg and Dantzic under the title of 'Poetisch-musikalisches Lustwäldlein,' which Albert energetically resisted. These latter editions, though very numerous, are now exceedingly rare. Their original title is 'Erster (Zweiter, etc.) Theil der Arien etlicher theils geistlicher theils weltlicher, zur Andacht, guten Sitten, keuscher Liebe und Ehrenlust, dienen der Lieder zum singen und spielen gesetzt.'[1] Then followed the dedication, a different one to each part. The second is dedicated to his 'most revered uncle, Heinrich Schütz,' the only existing reference to the relationship between them. Albert's original editions were in folio, but after his death an octavo edition was published in 1657 by A. Profe of Leipsic. In his prefaces Albert lays down the chief principles of the musical art, a circumstance which gives these documents great value, as they belong to a time in which by means of the 'basso continuo' a reform in music was effected, of which we are still feeling the influence. Mattheson, in his 'Ehren-pforte,' rightly assumes that Albert was the author of the 'Tractatus de modo conficiendi Contrapunctam,' which was then in manuscript in the possession of Valentin Hausmann. In the preface to the sixth section of his 'Arien' Albert speaks of the centenary of the Königsberg University, Aug. 28, 1644, and mentions that he had written a 'Comödien-Musik' for that occasion, which was afterwards repeated in the palace of the Kurfürst. Albert was thus, next after H. Schütz, the founder of German opera. Both Schütz's 'Daphne' and Albert's 'Comödien-Musik' appear to be lost, doubtless because they were not published.

Albert's 'Arien' give a lively picture of the time, and of the then influence of music. While the object of the opera as established in Italy was to provide music as a support to the spoken dialogue, so the sacred 'concert' came into existence at the same time in Italy and Germany as a rival to the old motetts, in which the words were thrown too much into the background. But the sacred 'concert' again, being sung only by a small number of voices, necessitated some support for the music, and this was the origin of the 'basso continuo.' Albert was in the best position—knowing Schütz who had been a pupil of Gabrieli in Venice; and on his arrival at Königsberg he underwent a second course of instruction under Stobbaeus, from which

  1. Fétis mistakes this title for that of the original edition.