Corbetta, Francesco | Varii capricii per la ghittara spagnuola (1643)

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Original edition being restored currently.

  • Instrumentation: 5-course baroque guitar
  • Edition | Source: Facsimile (2024) | Milano, 1643
  • Notation | Clefs: Alfabeto
  • Pages | Format: 1 volume, 86 pages - 27.9 x 21.6 cm

 Restoration's progress: 65/86 pages

Francesco Corbetta (ca. 1615 – 1681, in French also Francisque Corbette) was an Italian guitar virtuoso, teacher and composer. Along with his compatriots Giovanni Paolo Foscarini and Angelo Michele Bartolotti, he was a pioneer and exponent of the combination of strummed and plucked textures referred to today as "mixed" style.
Five collections of his music for the five-course guitar survive today. Corbetta's two earliest books include compositions in the Italian tradition, but his three later publications are increasingly in the French style. At least two others are lost. His first book, Scherzi Armonici (Bologna, 1639) includes mostly strummed dance music, while his later books are increasingly written in mixed style, culminating in his La Guitarre Royalle of 1671. His last book, also called La Guitarre Royalle, of 1674, returns to a simpler, more strumming-based style. These publications also included important information for continuo playing on the guitar.

Corbetta was the most significant guitar composer of his day (Gaspar Sanz called him "el mejor de todos," or "the greatest of all") and one of the first to publish in the mixed style. Corbetta was also influential as a teacher. As well as Granata, the French guitarist Rémy Médard was probably his student. Another French guitarist, Robert de Visée, composed a Tombeau de Monsieur Francisque that is thought to be an elegy for Corbetta. He may have known Corbetta personally, though there is no evidence he was his student.

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