Paisiello, Giovanni: Stabat Mater del Pergolese (Score)
Paisiello, Giovanni: Stabat Mater del Pergolese (Score)
Paisiello, Giovanni: Stabat Mater del Pergolese (Score)
Paisiello, Giovanni: Stabat Mater del Pergolese (Score)
Paisiello, Giovanni: Stabat Mater del Pergolese (Score)

Paisiello, Giovanni: Stabat Mater del Pergolese (Score)

Coll’aggiunta de’ Stromenti da fiato

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edition offenburg PG 0232
ISMN 979-0-700359-96-6

In 1810, when Giovanni Paisiello (Taranto 1740 - Naples 1816) published and performed on September 16th in Naples’ Cathedral his transcription of the Stabat Mater, he already had an established international career and could easily consider himself as the last and acclaimed testimony of a Neapolitan musical civilisation which had fascinated Europe and the whole world.

It is therefore rather appropriate Paisiello’s almost emphatic clarification set on the frontispiece of his edition published in Paris in 1810: “...senza dipartirsi dell’originalità...” (…without departing from the original…). Such clarification may make us smile today, given that he arbitrarily added wind instruments, modified some strings arrangements, expanded the vocal ensemble by adding tenor and bass to the two female voices, changed some fragments of the melodies, inserted dynamic, articulation and tempo indications which were not present in Pergolesi, and added new accompaniment figures.

These interventions changed Pergolesi’s text significantly, yet they did not betray it. After 74 years (1736-1810) Paisiello claimed l’”originalità dello Stabat Mater del Pergolese”, and, to be sure, he was fully entitled to say so, because of his historical context, because of his international prestige, and, above all, because of his deeply conscious sensitivity in interpreting the tradition he belonged to. His delicate mastery in the use of the wind instruments ensured his complete adherence to the sentiments expressed by Pergolesi’s music.

For our generation, raised in the respect of the original text – a due respect given the many inappropriate and misleading additions piled up in centuries – the listening of this transcription offers us a great opportunity for enjoying Pergolesi’s masterpiece in a different perspective. 

It is undoubtedly a challenge for the performers because it forces an interpretation articulated on three diachronic dimensions:  we–Pergolesi, we–Paisiello, Paisiello–Pergolesi. Finally, it invites us to consider a musical text not only as a static one, crystallized once and for all by the composer and to be looked at as in a display case, but also as a living, dynamic, mutable organism. 

Revision by Giuseppe Camerlingo

1. Stabat mater dolorosa: Canto1, Canto2, 2fl, strings
2. Cujus animam gementem: Tenore, strings
3. O quam tristis et afflicta: Canto1, Basso, 2ob, 2fg, strings
4. Quæ mœrebat et dolebat: Canto2, cl, strings
5. Quis est homo: Tenore, Basso, 2ob, 2cl, 2fg, 2cor, strings
6. Vidit suum dulcem natum: Canto1, strings
7. Eja mater fons amoris: Basso, fl, 2ob, 2cl, 2fg, strings
8. Fac ut ardeat cor meum: Canto1, Canto2, strings
9. Sancta mater istud agas: Tenore, Basso, fl, ob, cl, fg, 2 cor, strings
10. Fac ut portem christi mortem: Canto2, strings
11. Inflammatus et accensus: Tenore, Basso, 2fl, 2ob, 2cl, fg, 2cor, strings
12. Quando corpus morietur: Canto1, Canto2, 2fl, 2ob, 2cl, 2fg, 2cor, strings
13. Amen: Canto1, Canto2, Tenore, Basso, 2fl, 2ob, 2cl, 2fg, 2cor, strings

Orchestra parts and piano score are available separately.
Recording:  Stabat Mater del Pergolese di Giovanni Paisiello, Cosarara, G. Camerlingo, direttore, Agorà, 2000, AG2511


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