St Anne in Renaissance Music

St Anne in Renaissance Music : Devotion and Politics

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Devotion to St Anne, the apocryphal mother of the Virgin Mary, reached its height in the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries. Until now, Anne's reception history and political symbolism during this period have been primarily discussed through the lens of art history. This is the first study to explore the music that honoured the saint and its connections to some of the most prominent court cultures of western Europe. Michael Alan Anderson examines plainchant and polyphonic music for St Anne, in sources both familiar and previously unstudied, to illuminate not only Anne's wide-ranging intercessional capabilities but also the political force of the music devoted to her. Whether viewed as a fertility aide, wise mother, or dynastic protector, she modelled a number of valuable roles that rulers reflected in the music of their devotional programmes to project their noble lineage and prestige.
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Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 70 b/w illus. 20 tables 39 music examples
  • 1139899600
  • 9781139899604

Table of contents

1. Mary's mother: devotion, politics, and music; 2. Heritage and progeny in an office for St Anne; 3. Of widowhood and maternity: La Rue's Missa de Sancta Anna; 4. Devotion and letters: St Anne in pre-Reformation Wittenberg; 5. A 'divine favor' at the French court: in pursuit of a motet for St Anne; 6. Devotion without borders: the afterlife of Celeste beneficium; 7. The French royal trinity, biblical humanism and chanted Mass propers for St Anne; Postlude; Appendix A; Appendix B.
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Review quote

'... Anderson explores brilliantly and exhaustively the many subtle influences music dedicated to the Mother of Mary had on the 'political' views of European nobility, especially females ... The book is a triumph of prodigious research; close criticism of 'orthodox' views; mastery of a wide-ranging literature; and tendentious ... tireless, detailed, specifically targeted conclusions ... [It] is a wonder ... A treat for scholars, musicologists, and historians of music and those specializing in the period.' W. Metcalfe, Choice 'St. Anne in Renaissance Music contributes significantly to our understanding of the way that liturgical music functioned in late-medieval culture by carefully scrutinizing a number of pieces from multiple genres that are unified by topic ... Anderson deftly weaves together the various strands of devotion to St. Anne, drawing on the resources of early modern popular literature and visual culture, and the political contexts of various courts and churches, producing a book that is both thought provoking and pleasurable to read.' Jane Daphne Hatter, Speculum
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About Michael Alan Anderson

Michael Alan Anderson has taught at the Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester since 2008. In 2012, he won the Noah Greenberg Award, given by the American Musicological Society for outstanding contributions to historical performing practices. In that same year, he received the Deems Taylor Award from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for an article published in the journal Early Music History. Since 2008, he has been the Artistic Director of the professional early music ensemble Schola Antiqua of Chicago, which he co-founded in 2000. Their albums include previously unrecorded music by Leonin, Du Fay, La Rue, Guerrero, and Lassus.
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