Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln


Document Type


Date of this Version



Thesis (M.M.)—University of Nebraska—Lincoln, 1968. Department of Music.


Copyright 1968, the author. Used by permission.


This thesis is a study of the Canzon in Echo Duodecimi Toni (number twelve) by Giovanni Gabrieli, an early and lonely example of the use of the organ with instruments. While it is true that contemporaries of Gabrieli composed for organ and instruments, the organ remained strictly in its role as a continuo instrument. Gabrieli, however, was apparently thinking in terms of the organ as a solo instrument, an instrument which could serve as an adequate echo to the brass.

Recordings of the work are disappointing or non-existent. A string transcription of number eleven on an Angel label is romanticized, “pretty”, and much too slow. The brass version on a Westminster label is excellent, but it too is a performance of number 11, the organ being omitted. There are numerous performance problems in a work such as this, many of which revolve around the organ itself. The author’s solution to such issues includes substitution of woodwinds for brass and use of a small classic organ.

This thesis supplements the examination of Gabrieli’s Canzon with research on the history of the instrument of the organ. The author feels it is important to connect the research on Gabrieli’s work to the dawn of the organ and its use.

Advisor: Myron Roberts