One of the distinguishing features of Rognoni’s treatise is his special focus on extended cadenze per finali, in which the diminution occupies a greater duration than that of the notated cadence.[1] A fully-notated example of this practice is found in the final cadence of Monteverdi’s Exulta, filia Sion:

It therefore seemed appropriate to introduce a similar cadenza per finale at the conclusion of Marini’s extravagant Sonata per l’organo ... [e] cornetto. The extended cadence here is based on the following example from parte seconda, p.46, as indicated below, which Rognoni tells us is appropriate to use when the ornamented part is a tenth and then a twelfth (Decima e poi Duodecima) above the bass. 


During the early decades of the seventeenth century composers began increasingly to notate more elaborate ornamentation in their music. As can be seen in the performing editions for Venice 1629, many of the passaggi that would have been left to the improvisatory skill of the performer in previous generations are now fully notated. Nevertheless, there are still some moments that require the addition of extempore ornamentation, most notably at cadence points.

All members of The Gonzaga Band are well versed in the application of stylistically-appropriate ornamentation based on an extensive study of the diminution treatises of the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. In preparation for the Venice 1629 recording we turned to Francesco Rognoni’s Selva de varii passaggi (Milan, 1620), as the treatise closest in date and bearing the closest stylistic affinity with the music of this project.

Some simple examples of the application of Rognoni’s cadential formulae can be heard in the following extract from Schütz’s Exultavit cor meum. The ornaments are taken from parte prima, p.16, as marked.




[1] This topic is developed at length by Josué Meléndez Peláez, ‘Cadenze per finali: Exuberant and Extended Cadences in the 16th and 17th Centuries’, in Fulvia Morabito (ed.), Musical Improvisation in the Baroque Era (Turnhout: Brepols, 2019), pp. 63-80.