PHILIPPE DE MONTE
Philippe de Monte
Philippe de Monte, a leading representative of the fifth generation of Flemish polyphonists, is thought of as “the prince of music”. His work is one of the high points of late Renaissance Flemish polyphony. He enjoyes the admiration and friendship of fellow composers such as Orlando di Lasso and William ...
Biography Philippe de Monte
Philippe de Monte, a leading representative of the fifth generation of Flemish polyphonists, is thought of as “the prince of music”. His work is one of the high points of late Renaissance Flemish polyphony. He enjoyes the admiration and friendship of fellow composers such as Orlando di Lasso and William Byrd. Monte is known particularly for his often reprinted madrigals, which hold a prominent position among his secular and sacred works. His style gradually changes from slightly conservative and reserved to more personal and expressive, his polyphony and harmony becoming more complicated. Not given to extremes, however, he refrains from excessive drama and chromaticism. Monte is an erudite man who speaks five languages. Not surprisingly, he selects high-minded texts for his music by poets such as Petrarch and Ronsard. His work consists of ca. 40 Masses (most of them parody Masses), ca. 250 motets, 8 settings of the Magnificat, over 1,000 secular madrigals, ca. 140 sacred madrigals (madrigali spirituali) and chansons.
Monte is born in Mechelen in present-day Belgium and is probably a choirboy at St Rumbold's Cathedral. His name is possibly a Latinized “Van den Berghe”.
1542 - 1551
He resides in Italy and works, among other things, as a teacher in the home of a prominent banker in Naples. Until 1556, he is referred to in documents as “vicaris” of the Cathedral of Our Lady in Kamerijk [Cambrai Cathedral].
1554 - 1555
Monte's first collection of five-voice madrigals appears in Rome; 33 more were to follow. As “chorus prefectus”, he travels to London with the chapel of Philip II and returns to Flanders in 1555.
Monte travels to Italy. In 1557 he is in Rome. He is credited with being one of the best singers from the Low Countries.
Maximilian II appoints Monte to be his kapellmeister in Vienna. As a sign of appreciation, the emperor bestows on Monte the title of treasurer of the cathedral in Kamerijk [Cambrai Cathedral] in 1572. When the emperor dies in 1576, Monte is taken into the service of Maximilian's son Rudolf II. During his career at the imperial court, he has many students, among them the famous madrigalist Giovanni de Macque.
Monte travels to the Low Countries to recruit singers for the imperial chapel.
His first collection of motets is issued.
Monte's only collection of chansons is issued in Paris under the title “Sonetz de P. de Ronsard mis en musique”.
The imperial court is moved to Prague. Monte's request to be released from service is denied, and he will continue working there until his death.
Monte dies on July 4.
Discography Philippe de Monte
In the discography you will find all recordings that have been released listed chronologically. We restrict ourselves to the title, the type of audio, year of publication or recording, label, list of guest musicians, plus any comments on the issue.
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