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Amor, no te llame amor

Songs in the Spanish theater of the Golden Age

This programme presents a selection of tonos or canciones from the Spanish Golden Age, most of them unpublished, by one of the best Spanish composers of the time: Juan Hidalgo. A tono is a solo song, usually with a profane text, whose origin can be found in the songs or airs performed in comedies, operas and zarzuelas. Such songs were taken out of the works for which they were composed and came to form part of a separate repertoire in court circles not only in Spain but also in Austria and France, where they enjoyed great success. 

The tonos humanos (secular songs) are characterised by simple melodies of a popular nature but with great rhythmical complexity, accentuated by the Spanish guitar accompaniment. While the Italian influence made a succession of recitative and aria the norm for theatrical music in Europe, in Spain the traditional structure of estribillo (refrain) and copla (stanza) was preserved, although some experiments merged the Spanish and Italian forms.

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