The Kennedy Center

da Firenze Lorenzo


Lorenzo da Firenze was an composer and music teacher of the Trecento, during the period known as the Italian ars nova.  He was closely associated with Francesco Landini in Florence.
Although little is known about his life, some details may be inferred from his music.  The texts of Ita se n'er'a star and Vidi, ne l'ombra strongly suggest that Lorenzo knew the work of Landini, Andreas de Florentia and Paolo da Firenze.  He taught in Florence where Landini was probably one of his students.  In 1348, he became a canon at the church of San Lorenzo in Florence, a post that lasted until his death. 
Lorenzo composed ballette, 10 madrigals, one caccia, a two-voice Sanctus, the Antefana, and perhaps a Gloria.  The works are found solely in Tuscan sources, among which the Squarcialupi Codex (I-Fl 87) contains all the secular compositions. Lorenzo also set two poems by Boccaccio to music.
His style is complex, progressive and sometimes experimental.  The compositions make extensive use of melisma, which is a group of notes sung to a single syllable (as opposed to coloratura) and several pieces contain French musical elements. 
He died in Florence in December 1372 or January 1373.