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GUILLAUME DUFAY  

(1397 - 1474)

Generally regarded as the leading composer of his time, Guillaume Dufay was born in Cambrai around the beginning of the 15th century. A chorister at Cambrai Cathedral, he was briefly in the service of the Malatesta family in Italy, and after a further period at home returned to join the papal choir in 1428. He was subsequently involved with a number of ruling families in Italy, including the d’Estes of Ferrara and the rulers of Savoy, before returning to Cambrai, where he retained a position as canon of the cathedral until his death. Dufay represents the generation influenced by the English composer John Dunstable and forming the so-called Burgundian or First Netherlands School of composers, flourishing in the territory ruled by the Dukes of Burgundy but widespread in its own influence as the predominant Renaissance musical style.

Church Music

Dufay wrote a considerable quantity of church music. These compositions include a number of Mass settings, with one based on the most popular secular cantus firmus L’homme armé, one on his own secular ballade Se la face ay pale and another on his Marian antiphon Ave regina caelorum. He asked for the Marian antiphon-motet Ave regina caelorum to be sung on his death-bed. His isorhythmic motet (a work using a particular rhythmic structural device developed in the previous century) Nuper rosarum flores was performed at the dedication of the Brunelleschi dome in Florence in 1436. His motet O très piteulx / Omnes amici, a lament for the fall of Constantinople in 1453, was probably sung at the extravagant Banquet of the Oath of the Pheasant given by Philippe the Good of Burgundy at Lille in 1454, when an attempt was made to raise a Crusade to free the old Eastern capital of the Roman Empire.

Secular Music

Dufay wrote more than 70 chansons, setting verses in the fashionable forms of the time—the ballade, the virelai and rondeau. It would be invidious to make distinction between many of these, the majority in the form of rondeaux, although Adieu ces bons vins de Lannoys strikes a note of poetic nostalgia that may arouse sympathy.

Box Set Release Catalogue Number
Faszination Alte Music Naxos 8.505075

View by Role: Classical Composer | Lyricist
Role: Classical Composer 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 
Art and Music: Da Vinci - Music of His Time Naxos
8.558057
Choral - Sacred, Vocal
BENEDICTUS - Classical Music for Reflection and Meditation Naxos
8.556705
Choral - Sacred
Chamber Music - PULLOIS, J. / DUFAY, G. / CICONIA, J. / BINCHOIS, G. de B. dit (Music from the Court of Burgundy) (Ciaramella) Yarlung Records
YAR05785
Vocal Ensemble
Choral Music - HILDEGARD OF BINGEN / PALESTRINA, G. / BYRD, W. / ISAAC, H. / JOSQUIN DES PREZ / DUFAY, G. (Voices of Ascension Chorus) Delos
DE3174
Choral - Sacred
Discover Early Music Naxos Educational
8.558170-71
Vocal
DUFAY, G.: Chamber Music (Cantio Triplex) (Diferencias Ensemble) Divox
CDX-79610
Choral - Sacred, Vocal, Chamber Music, Vocal Ensemble, Chamber Music
DUFAY: Chansons Naxos
8.553458
Vocal
DUFAY: Missa L' homme arme Naxos
8.553087
Choral - Sacred
Early Music (The Glory of) Naxos
8.554064
Chamber Music
Ensemble Unicorn: Early Music Recordings, Vol. 1 (5-CD Box Set) Naxos
8.505230
Vocal
GLORIA - Classical Music for Reflection and Meditation Naxos
8.556702
Choral - Sacred
Harp Music (Renaissance) - TROMBONCINO, B. / MODERNE, J. / CABEZON, A. de / VALDERRABANO, E. de (Baxter) Dorian Sono Luminus
DOR-93193
Chamber Music
IN VINO - Il Vino in musica tra XV e XVI secolo Tactus
TC400004
Vocal
KLEIST, H. von: Zweikampf (Der) Naxos Hoerbucher
NHB10122
Chamber Music
Music for Kids CD 9: Music from Planet Earth Naxos Educational
8.558022
Music Education
MUSIC FOR VAN DYCK - Chansons and Madrigals from the 16th and the 20th Centuries (Ring Around Quartet) Newton Classics
NC8802171
Vocal Ensemble
ON THE WAY TO BETHLEHEM Naxos
8.553132DX
Vocal
On the Way to Bethlehem: Music of the Medieval Pilgrim Naxos
8.553132G
Vocal
On the Way to Bethlehem: Music of the Medieval Pilgrim (Ensemble Unicorn) Naxos
8.553132
Vocal
SACRED AND SECULAR MUSIC FROM RENAISSANCE GERMANY Naxos
8.557627
Chamber Music
SAINTS AND SINNERS - The Music of Medieval and Renaissance Europe [10 CD Boxed Set] Naxos
8.501067
Chamber Music, Choral - Sacred, Vocal
SANCTUS - Classical Music for Reflection and Meditation Naxos
8.556704
Choral - Sacred
SONG OF SONGS (THE) - Settings from Different Centuries Oehms Classics
OC803
Choral - Sacred
Vocal and Chamber Music (15th Century Italy) - BRASSART, J. / ARNOLD DE LANTINS / JOHANNES DE LYMBURGIA (Musica del XV Secolo in Italia) (Ars Italica) Tactus
TC400001
Vocal Ensemble
World of Early Music Naxos
8.554770-71
Vocal
Role: Lyricist 
Album Title
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