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USF Faculty Recital: John Robison, Lute

Event Type: Music
Facility: School of Music (MUS)
Presented By: School of Music
On Sunday, September 16th at 4:00 p.m., USF music professor John Robison will present a program 
of solo music for the Renaissance lute, the Baroque theorbo, and the Baroque archlute; he will be 
joined by guest artist Maggie Coleman for some English and Italian lute songs.  The first portion of the 
concert will be devoted to lute music written between c. 1580 and 1620, the period towards the end 
of the Renaissance when lute music becomes particularly complex in style.  This part of the program 
will feature music for the highly distinctive ten-course late Renaissance lute, including music from 
British manuscript sources by composers Anthony Holborne, Robert Johnson, and Thomas Robinson. 
 Late Renaissance music from Italy (Alfonso Ferrabosco I), Germany (Elias Mertel, Matthaeus 
Reymann), and the Netherlands (Nicholas Vallet) will also be represented on the program.  For this 
portion of the program Dr. Robison will be performing on a ten-course lute with nineteen strings, an 
instrument that was especially popular with early seventeenth-century composers.  Several 
Elizabethan lute songs by Thomas Campion, John Dowland, and Robert Jones will be included on 
the program, along with  seventeenth-century Italian songs performed with either a large 
fourteen-course theorbo or with the archlute.  The final portion of the program will feature Dr. Robison 
performing on the Baroque theorbo and archlute, both of them large instruments with two necks and 
fourteen courses that were immensely popular during the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. 
 The demanding theorbo and archlute portion of the program will include toccatas, ballettos, 
correntes, and variations by early seventeenth-century Italian masters (Alessandro Piccinini, Pietro 
Paolo Melii, Giovanni Kapsberger), as well as a sonata by one of the last composers for the archlute, 
the early eighteenth-century master Giovanni Zamboni.  The program will conclude with a secular 
cantata by the late seventeenth-century composer Alessandro Stradella.  All types of solo 
instrumental popular during the Renaissance/Baroque will be included on the program, including 
preludes, stylized dance music, variations, and fantasias.  The program, which will be held in the 
School of Music recital hall, is free and open to the public.  

The most active lutenist in the state of Florida, John Robison received his doctoral degree in early 
music from Stanford University in 1975, where he studied with George Houle, Imogene Horsley, 
William Mahrt, Stanley Buetens, and Leonard Ratner.  Dr. Robison joined the music faculty at the 
University of South Florida in 1977, where he is currently a Professor of Musicology and Director of 
Early Music Ensembles in the School of Music.  A versatile musician who performs regularly on 
plucked string, bowed string, and woodwind instruments, he has done numerous solo Renaissance 
lute recitals over the past thirty-nine years, and also performs regularly on the viola da gamba, 
Renaissance/Baroque recorders, Renaissance double reeds (shawm, rackett, curtal), Baroque oboe, 
and modern oboe/english horn.  As a performer and as a scholar he has appeared throughout the 
United States, Canada, England, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Egypt, Australia, China and South 
Korea.  An active researcher, he often selects the repertory for his lute recitals from European lute 
manuscripts that he examines in person.  His articles and books have been published in the United 
States, Europe and Asia, and he has received numerous grants for his work on 
Renaissance/Baroque music and for his research on contemporary intercultural composers.  His 
research interests include Renaissance lute music, German Renaissance composers, early 
performance practices, and the seventeenth-century fugue.  He also specializes in the music of 
contemporary African and Asian composers (Egypt, Nigeria, Azerbaijan, India, China, South Korea), 
and has a book devoted to Korean women composers scheduled for publication in 2012.  A scholarly 
edition of the complete works of German Renaissance composer Jacob Meiland is also expected to 
appear in 2012.  In addition, he was the program chair for the 2011 international conference of the 
College Music Society.

Guest artist/soprano Maggie Coleman is a native of Puerto Rico, where she studied at the 
Conservatorio de Musica before earning her B.M. degree in vocal performance from Iowa State 
University.  A resident of Tampa since 1987, she is the soloist and section leader at St. Andrew’s 
Episcopal Church, and has appeared as a soloist for the Sarasota Choral Society, Tampa Bay 
Performing Arts Center, Master Chorale, Oratorio Society of Tampa, and the Mostly Pops Orchestra.  
Also a cantor at Nativity Catholic Church, she has performed supporting roles with Tampa Bay Opera, 
and leading roles with the Spanish Lyric Theater.

Date: 9/16/2012
Event Information: For additional event information, please visit:
Purchase Tickets: A Free Event.
Location: Barness Recital Hall
Start Time: 4:00 PM
End Time: 5:30 PM
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