The interconnection between lute and keyboard repertoires of the 15th century finds its clearest expression in the biography of Conrad Paumann (c.1410 – 1473). Blind from birth, Paumann was a virtuoso of the lute and organ, supervised the compilation of organ repertoire and he was the inventor of the German notation for lute: he embodied the eclecticism and experimental vocation of the great musicians of the crucial moment in the history of Western music in which the practice of tablature emerged.
“Tabling” means adapting a pre-existing polyphonic composition to the execution on an instrument capable of reproducing the various voices simultaneously. With the acquisition of keying which took place during the fifteenth century, the lute joined the first tabulator instruments such as the liturgical organ, the portative organ and the archaic cymbals, as revealed by the expression “in cytaris vel etiam in organis”, written as a commentary on a composition of the Buxheimer codex.
This program explores the interaction between tabulator instruments in the interpretation of 14th and 15th century repertoires, presenting examples taken from medieval Italian and Central European organ literature and original adaptations of contemporary vocal and instrumental repertoire in an attempt to recover compositional practice alongside that executive.