Ippolito Ciera
Ippolito Ciera was an Italian
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 composer of the Renaissance
Renaissance music
Renaissance music is European music written during the Renaissance. Defining the beginning of the musical era is difficult, given that its defining characteristics were adopted only gradually; musicologists have placed its beginnings from as early as 1300 to as late as the 1470s.Literally meaning...

, active at Treviso
Treviso is a city and comune in Veneto, northern Italy. It is the capital of the province of Treviso and the municipality has 82,854 inhabitants : some 3,000 live within the Venetian walls or in the historical and monumental center, some 80,000 live in the urban center proper, while the city...

 and Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...


Little is yet known about his life, for neither his biography nor his works have yet been the subject of a scholarly study. He was a Dominican
Dominican Order
The Order of Preachers , after the 15th century more commonly known as the Dominican Order or Dominicans, is a Catholic religious order founded by Saint Dominic and approved by Pope Honorius III on 22 December 1216 in France...

 friar and sang at Treviso Cathedral: the earliest documentary record of his life is a payment in 1546 for his salary there. In addition to singing, he taught music to the novices at the convent of San Nicolò. By 1561, he had become maestro di cappella, the choirmaster, at the church of San Giovanni e Paolo in Venice, a much more prestigious position, and incidentally in one of the musical centers of Europe. He probably knew Adrian Willaert
Adrian Willaert
Adrian Willaert was a Flemish composer of the Renaissance and founder of the Venetian School. He was one of the most representative members of the generation of northern composers who moved to Italy and transplanted the polyphonic Franco-Flemish style there....

, the founder of the Venetian School, and may have studied with him, as did many of the musicians in Venice at that time; his veneration for the elder master is shown in a laudatory sonnet
A sonnet is one of several forms of poetry that originate in Europe, mainly Provence and Italy. A sonnet commonly has 14 lines. The term "sonnet" derives from the Occitan word sonet and the Italian word sonetto, both meaning "little song" or "little sound"...

 he wrote and set to music for him. It is No. 12 in his first book of madrigal
Madrigal (music)
A madrigal is a secular vocal music composition, usually a partsong, of the Renaissance and early Baroque eras. Traditionally, polyphonic madrigals are unaccompanied; the number of voices varies from two to eight, and most frequently from three to six....


All of Ciera's known music is vocal. His complete surviving output amounts to a single setting of the mass
Mass (music)
The Mass, a form of sacred musical composition, is a choral composition that sets the invariable portions of the Eucharistic liturgy to music...

, four motet
In classical music, motet is a word that is applied to a number of highly varied choral musical compositions.-Etymology:The name comes either from the Latin movere, or a Latinized version of Old French mot, "word" or "verbal utterance." The Medieval Latin for "motet" is motectum, and the Italian...

s, and two published collections of madrigals. Dates of the works range from 1554 to 1561, with the two books of madrigals – the first for four voices, and the second for five – published in 1554 and 1561, respectively. Ciera's style in his sacred music (the motets and mass) was akin to that of the Netherlanders
Franco-Flemish School
In music, the Franco-Flemish School or more precisely the Netherlandish School refers, somewhat imprecisely, to the style of polyphonic vocal music composition in Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries, and to the composers who wrote it...

, with dense pervading imitation
Imitation (music)
In music, imitation is when a melody in a polyphonic texture is repeated shortly after its first appearance in a different voice, usually at a different pitch. The melody may vary through transposition, inversion, or otherwise, but retain its original character...

. His madrigals, on the other hand, use chordal harmonies, and occasionally what was referred to as the "note nere" technique ("black note" for "filled in notes" – i.e. quick note values, running passages, alternating with other textures). Some of the madrigals are antiphon
An antiphon in Christian music and ritual, is a "responsory" by a choir or congregation, usually in Gregorian chant, to a psalm or other text in a religious service or musical work....

al in places, reminiscent of the polychoral
Venetian polychoral style
The Venetian polychoral style was a type of music of the late Renaissance and early Baroque eras which involved spatially separate choirs singing in alternation...

style of the Venetian School.
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