Voglio di vita uscir
A critical performing edition of both of the 17th century Italian manuscript sources for this striking vocal work
Editor: Edited by Barbara Sachs
for voice and basso continuo
Voglio di vita uscir (SV.337) is a superb solo piece, probably written after 1630. Its attribution to Claudio Monteverdi (Cremona, 1567-Venice, 1643) and its trend-setting importance are now accepted. Its drama is that of a soliloquy, in which the unrequited lover, addressing his absent beloved, expresses a joyful death-wish, and continuo variations and repeats, indicated or not, could be exploited on stage. In the C major ‘Florentine’ source each stanza is introduced by a ground, or variations of it, giving the singer time to pause or move. In the D major ‘Neapolitan’ source, repeat signs double the duration of the Chaconne, already a tour de force. Without an autograph, but with these two contemporary versions of this mature piece by Monteverdi, remarkable for the compositional freedom of its ostinato bass, performers are here offered an edition of both, and all the structural options they present.