Other non-UK Composers

Giulio Abondante (fl.1547 - 11587)
Italian lutenist and composer who apparently published seven volumes of lute music, of which only three have been found. This bergamasca is from the fifth volume (Sybrandy, 2001).

Bergamasca [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
The Bergamasca is a ground bass dance form originally from Bergamo in Northern Italy.


Emanuel Adrienssen (c1554 - 1604)

Adrienssen was a Flemish lutenist, teacher and composer.

[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07

Robert Ballard (c1572 - c1650) was a French lutenist who published collections of pieces in 1611 and 1614. The following pieces come from the 1611 publication Premier Livre de tablature de luth.

Entrée de Luth 1 (Lute Prelude) [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
This is the first of nine preludes in the
Premiere Livre. Frederick Noad includes the piece in his volume The Renaissance Guitar (Noad 1974) and speculates that it might be a tombeau (lament). He simplifies bar 8 on the grounds of playability, but the whole piece is not easy to play and I think the original version of this bar is not especially difficult for guitarists with a good stretch, so I have restored it.

Angélique Troisième
[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 08
The Premiere Livre includes a section entitled Les Angéliques that has ten pieces. Though there was at this time a single-strung theorbo-like lute named the Angélique these pieces do not seem to be for this instrument as the tablature does not reflect its tuning. Instead editors of the modern facsimile version, Boquet and Goy (1995), suggest they are Les favorites d’Angélique and that this is a reference to Angélique Paulet a notable musician and actress of the time.

Ballet 5 [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
Angelo Michele Bartolotti (early c17 - after 1668)
Italian composer and skilled player of guitar and theorbo. Published two books of baroque guitar solos. Was among the first baroque guitar composers (along with Foscarini and Pellegrini) to make some use of the plucked style of playing (copying lute technique) rather than relying wholly on strumming (Strizich & Boye, 2014).

Passacaglia [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
One of a cycle of passacaglias in all the major and minor keys from from Libro primo di chitarra spagnola (1640).

Jean-Baptiste Besard (c1567 - c1625) was a lutenist from the Burgundy region of France who published an important collection of lute pieces and vocal music,Thesaurus Harmonicus (1603).

Bergamasco [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
This is one of numerous pieces found in the lute literature using the Bergamasco ground bass dance form originally from Bergamo in Northern Italy. Is is one of the pieces in the collection by Besard himself.

[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] (Anon) Grade 07
This galliard is one of the anonymous pieces in Thesaurus Harmonicus but for simplicity I have included it here. I have not labelled the strains in this galliard, which could be regarded as AA’,BB’,C in structure, but all the strains are harmonically very similar (unlike, for example, a Dowland galliard).

Heinrich von Biber (1644 - 1704)
Violinist and composer born in Bohemia. Violin virtuoso and composer of instrumental and vocal, sacred and secular music. Famed for his violin sonatas (
Dann & Sehnal, 2020).

Passacaglia [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 08
This passacaglia is from Biber’s Sonata 6 for violin and continuo. I have adapted the piece from an intabulation for baroque lute by Michael Treder.

Joan Ambrosio Dalza was probably born in Milan around 1508. He was a lutenist and the composer and arranger of Petrucci’s Intabolatura de lauto libro quarto (Venice, 1508) which is among the earliest extant printed lute sources. (Wess &Coehlo 2001).

Pavana alla Ferrarese [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
[When I first played this piece I would retune the third string to F sharp and use a capo at the second position. Now I find it just as easy to play in normal guitar tuning and I think it sounds all right without the capo.]

Pavana alla Venetiana [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06


Marco dall’Aquila (c1450 - after 1538)
Italian lutenist and composer. Thought to have published some of the earliest printed lute music, now lost so that his work is now only found in manuscript sources (Ness, 2001)

Ricercar 33 [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
I have recast this ricercar that was written in F for six course lute (assuming a lute in G) My arrangement (in dropped D tuning) adds a bass D that does not appear in a direct transcription from the lute tablature.

Jacques Gallot (c1625 - c1695), known as le vieux Gallot to distinguish him from his nephew Pierre Gallot, was a Parisian lutenist and composer, a pupil of Ennemond Gaultier. His music is found in manuscript sources as well as in his own publication Pièces de luth composées sur differens modes published around 1685.

L’Amant Malheureux (The Unhappy Lover) [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 08
This allemande is from the Saizenay manuscript. Seventy or so years later Sylvius Leopold Weiss adapted and extended this piece to make his own version of L’Amant Malheureux

La Comète [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
Judging by the date
La Comète may well celebrate the first comet discovered by telescope (in 1680 by Gottfried Kirch, a German astronomer) which, as it approached, became bright enough to be seen in daylight. The piece is found in one of the manuscripts in the Leipzig State Library where it is described as a chaconne though it doesn’t stick at all closely to the usual chaconne format.

Ennemond Gaultier (1575 - 1651), known as le vieux Gaultier to distinguish him from his younger cousin Denis was a composer and lutenist at the court of the French King Henri IV; he was also known in England where he played at the court of King Charles I in 1630. (Rollin, M. 2001).

Chacone [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] E Grade 07
This stately piece (notice the variant spelling) is found in the Hendar Robarts lute Book. The piece is originally in F major and the tablature shows that neither the first nor the second course is used, but use is made of all the bass courses. This key is too low for the guitar, but in order to try and preserve its character I have transcribed it into A major. The tablature contains an indication that the three descending semiquavers in bars 2 and 4 should be played by raking the first finger across the strings.

Pietro Paolo Melli da Reggio (1579 - after 1623)
Melli was an Italian lutenist and composer who worked mostly in Austria (in the court of Emperor Matthias, and later his successor Ferdinand II) though his publications were printed in Italy. He apparently published five volumes of music for lute and liuto attiorbato though the first one has not survived. The Liuto attiorbato is a lute of 7 or 8 double courses of stopped strings, with 6 or 7 single or double courses of unstopped diapasons - essentially the same as an archlute and smaller than most theorbos. (Antonicek & Saunders, 2001; Spencer, 1976)

Capricio Chromatico
[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
This piece is from the fourth book, Intavolatura di liuto attiorbato, libro IV. It makes beautiful use of chromatic note and chord progressions throughout; fingering the piece on the guitar requires careful thought, especially with drop D tuning (which is necessary to preserve the lowest bass notes).


Charles Mouton (1617 - ?1699) was probably a pupil of Denis Gaultier and was himself the teacher of René Milleran, a language professor and amateur lutenist who compiled the Milleran manuscript, one of the most important extant sources of French seventeenth century lute music.

This Chaconne [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
from the Milleran collection plays about with the form of the piece, inserting extra phrases into the basic four bar pattern. I find it an elegant piece with a sense of the unexpected about it - a welcome change perhaps from the somewhat formulaic nature of many lute chaconnes. I first came across it in the guitar arrangement by David Grimes in Treasures of the Baroque, volume 2 (Grimes 1992) and this arrangement is made from the tablature transcription by Wilfred Foxe in Lute News, 68 (Foxe 2003).
There is a longer version of the same piece in the Haslemere manuscript inscribed 'Par Märtten’ which can be found here:
ChaconneHM [PF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07


Santiago de Murcia was a Spanish composer, theorist and guitarist. He was born around 1682, probably in Madrid and is thought to have died in Mexico around 1740*. He may have studied with Francisco Guerau, music master at the royal choir school from 1693 and at the royal chapel, 1696–1700, another guitar composer. During the first decade of the 18th century he became guitar teacher to Queen María Luisa Gabriela, the young wife of Felipe V, who also employed Antonio de Murcia (probably Santiago’s brother) as her personal guitar maker. He probably journeyed first to France, Belgium or Holland and arrived in Mexico some time between 1718 and 1731. De Murcia's music is for five-course guitar and used tablature as opposed to staff notation. He was among the last to use re-entrant tunings, with the lowest string placed in the middle; see (Russell, C.H. 2001).
*Note, de Murcia’s entry in Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santiago_de_Murcia accessed 23 September 2008) suggests that Murcia’s manuscripts were taken to Mexico by subsequent owners and that Murcia himself did not travel there. Also that a recent (2006) discovery of a Murcia manuscript was made in Chile.

[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 05
This piece appears as a modern guitar arrangement in Grimes (1991). The text in this volume taken together with the note about de Murcia in volume 2 suggests that this piece was found in a manuscript in a Mexican collection and recognised in 1985 by Michael Lorimer as the work of de Murcia. The music is of interest because (as Grimes puts it) "The astute listener may recognise the tune here, which is more familiar in Renaissance and modern versions. Thus illustrating the ubiquity of a good tune. The Grimes arrangement is in G minor, but I think A minor is a better option for the modern guitar, being easier to play, more in line with other arrangements of the tune and allowing for some octave bass notes not possible on the 5 string guitar.

Philipp Franz Le Sage de Richée (fl c1695)
A German lutenist of French birth probably a pupil of Charles Mouton. Not much is known of his life and his single surviving work is the volume Cabinet der Lauten, published in 1695 which contains 98 pieces arranged in 12 suites. (Boetticher, 2001).

[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 08
This passacaglia has an unusual instruction printed under the title. The cursive script used is not entirely clear but I think it reads:
“Dieses mus. sehr Langsam, Und mit discretion geschlagen werden”
I take this to mean the piece should be played slowly and with rhythmic freedom.


Johann Hermann Schein (1586 - 1630) who was born in Dresden and worked as a musician in Leipzig, published Banchetto Musicale (1617), a collection of instrumental suites based on dance tunes.

Padouana [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
scored originally for four Krummhorns.

Jacques St. Luc (1616 - c1710) was a Flemish lutenist and composer who worked in Brussels Paris and Vienna. He left nearly 200 pieces for the lute. He seems to have been less wedded to the French ‘style brise’ than de Visee and the other French lutenists of the period (including Charles Mouton and the Gallot family); see (Couvrer and Vendrix, 2001)

Tombeau de M. François Ginter [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] St. Luc Grade 05
This piece is an example of an instrumental lament that appears to have been a common way of mourning a musician’s death at this time. In this case it is the death of another lutenist François Ginter. Probably the best known piece of this kind known to modern guitarists is Weiss’s ‘Tombeau sur le mort de M. le Compte de Logy’ (on the death of the amateur lutenist Jean Anton Logy). This is by no means as great a piece, but if played slowly with an emphatic rhythm, can sound very effective and might serve as an easier introduction to the genre.

Georg Philipp Telemann

[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
This piece is an arrangement of a violin fantasy. In making the arrangement I have fairly freely added extra bass notes and put a number of existing bass notes and some phrases down an octave (eg the lower part in bar 3 where the top part enters and the upper voice in bars 17 - 19)

Enríquez de Valderrábano
(1500 - after 1557) a Spanish vihuela player and one of the most important composers for the instrument.

Guardame Las Vacas
[PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 07
This set of variations is much less well known among guitarists that the set by Luis de Narváez, but equally worth playing.

Robert de Visee (c1655 - 1733) was a guitarist, theorbo, lute and viol player and composer. He was possibly a pupil of Corbetta. From about 1680 he was a chamber musician to Louis XIV (“Le roi soleil”); (Strizich & Ledbetter, 2001). A number of his suites for the (5 course) baroque guitar have been arranged for modern guitar, as have a set of theorbo arrangements of keyboard pieces by François Couperin and there is scope for arranging more of his theorbo works.

Chaconne: Version 1) [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
Version 2) [
PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
Version 3) [
PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 06
This chaconne is found in the
Saizenay MS .There is a marvellous recording of Thomas Berghan playing it on the theorbo on YouTube, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q1IWnz0F2wQ. My Version 2) is an attempt to capture what TB plays on this track, which is different in some detail from the MS version. Version 3) also references the Berghan version but is closer to what is found in the manuscript.

Antonio Vivaldi

It’s not entirely clear what instrument Vivaldi intended for his very well known Lute Concerto (RV 93) but it is often played as a guitar concerto and can be made into a reasonable guitar solo. I have seen two commercially available versions for guitar solo, one by Jamey Belizzi and the other by Charlie Byrd, neither of which I found entirely satisfactory. I don’t claim that my version is better, but this is the way I like it!

Lute Concerto (RV93) [PDF] [MIDI] [XML] Grade 08

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