IDEA Music | Musica IDEA explores what it means to read the arcane notation and page designs of 16th-century music. With an initial focus on the frottola (song) books of the first music printer, Ottaviano Petrucci, IDEA Music illustrates applications of 16th-century music theory, pedagogy, and printing practices to this repertory, together with research about the history, performance practices, and patronage of these songs and the people who created them. The essays and visualizations in IDEA Music integrate with images and transcriptions of Isabella d’Este’s letters concerning music and musicians and other scholarly content from the IDEA environment.

IDEA Music originated as a faculty research project entitled POPP: Parsing Ottaviano Petrucci’s Prints. During my fellowship year, I had the great good fortune to work in consultation and collaboration with diverse groups of insightful and talented scholars, scientists, and performers – including the members of the University of North Carolina’s Institute for the Arts & Humanities Faculty Seminar in fall 2014, the staff of UNC’s Digital Innovations Lab, the members of my Medieval and Early Modern Studies seminar “Big Data for Intimate Spaces” which took place in Chapel Hill during a winter storm in February/March 2015, and the contributors to my film “Ad tempo taci: Songs for Isabella d’Este,” which we recorded in Mantua in May 2015.

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