AGNEW Paul Gesualdo Cycle 2018 IMG 5268 Oscar Ortega-header

Concert vocal

Gesualdo - Fourth Book

Complete Cycle


Gesualdo - Fourth Book
Complete Cycle


Les Arts Florissants

Musical Direction and tenor



Miriam ALLAN, soprano
Hannah MORRISON, soprano
Lucile RICHARDOT, contralto
Sean CLAYTON, tenor
Edward GRINT, bass

Éditions musicales :
Les Arts Florissants (Pascal Duc)

Following the success of Monteverdi’s Madrigals, Paul Agnew and his team of singers will now dedicate three years to the earlier madrigals of Carlo Gesulado, author of both some of the most traditional 5 part madrigals ever written and of some of the most extreme vocal chamber works in the history of composition.

“Count Gesualdo was a self-proclaimed violent murderer, a devout and repenting Christian, a nobleman and a published composer all at the same time. A complex and contradictory character, he played a key role in a turning point in the history of music at the beginning of the 17th century, contributing some of the fundamental elements which will secure a place for new, dramatic and modern music – la seconda prattica.

In 2018 we undertake the first step in a cycle of the six books of madrigals. We will attempt to place them in their context by associating them with music of their contemporaries and retracing the emergence of the chromatic madrigal, trying to understand how Gesualdo finally came to write at the very end of his life, music which today continues to shock and fascinate.

Sometimes treated as a mad man having lost all sense of reason, Gesualdo was indeed an artist who followed a compositional logic and contributed to enlarging and pushing the possibilities of musical expression to its limits.”

Paul Agnew

This concert is part of a complete cycle of Gesualdo madrigals being performed during three seasons by Les Arts Florissants and Paul Agnew in partnership with la Cité de la musique – Philharmonie de Paris. 

Video - Book 3 on Philharmonie Live

Previous dates

Season 2019-2020

Antwerp / Belgium

  • Thursday, February 6 2020, 9pm

Paris / France
Philharmonie de Paris / Cité de la Musique, Concert hall

  • Monday, February 10 2020, 8.30pm

Madrid / Spain
Auditorio Nacional de Música

  • Thursday, February 13 2020, 7.30pm
  • Thursday, February 13 2020, 7.30pm

Florence / Italy
Teatro della Pergola

  • Monday, February 17 2020, 9pm

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