LUIGI ROSSI (1598 - 1653)
Luigi Rossi was born in Torremaggiore about the year 1597 and studied in Naples, where he remained for some years in the service of the court. He later moved to Rome in the service of the Borghese family and became organist at the church of S Luigi dei Francesi in 1633, retaining this position until his death in 1653. He joined the musical establishment of Cardinal Antonio Barberini in 1641 and wrote for him his very successful opera, Il palazzo incantato, followed by a second opera, Orfeo, for the French court, during the period of the Barberinis exile, after the death of the Barberini Pope, whose patronage was so important to the cultural life of Rome. His compositions include some three hundred or so surviving cantatas in which he captures a blend of recitative, arioso and lyrical aria. Rossis Ingordo human desio sets a poem in a more regular metre than the varied versi sciolti of the Lamento di Zaida mora, its ten-line stanzas in a rhyming pattern of seven-syllable lines and hendecasyllabics. This account of the vanity of human wishes again blends recitative, arioso and aria.