Venetian composer Barbara Strozzi was one of the most important composers of Italian cantatas and baroque arias. Her work was published prolifically during her lifetime and was essential to the historical development of vocal music and opera beyond the baroque era. Her sensitivity to text and experimentation with form and style offered nuance and a high level of emotional sensitivity to her music. During her lifetime, Strozzi published eight volumes of her own music, and had more secular music in print than any other composer of the era
Primarily what we know of Strozzi is related to her compositions, but she was also a very talented singer and likely sang and accompanied herself in performance. Even though Strozzi associated with some of the major opera composers of her day and was a prominent figure of 17th century Venetian musical life, when opera was a major genre, she neither performed in nor composed an opera.
Little is known of Strozzi’s life after her last composition in 1664. Her prolific contributions to the cantata repertoire and to overall 17th century vocal music established Strozzi as one of the leading female composers of her time; her works remain well known and are regularly performed. Her ability to work sensitively with text and compose music characterized by emotional immediacy and innovative use of form has given her music lasting relatability and appreciation.
Source: A Modern Reveal
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