Renaissance Chansons as Division Models

The late sixteenth century division manuals contained numerous examples of how to decorate various note progressions and cadences, but also included examples of whole pieces with suggested ornamentation. The pieces were most often well-known chansons or madrigals, dating typically from the mid-sixteenth century. The authors of the division books chose these pieces because they would have been familiar to their students, and so the structure upon which the decorations were hung would have been easily discernible.

Most of us nowadays are not so fortunate, and have at best a passing familiarity with these Renaissance pop-songs; it therefore is often the case that playing the divisions can seem like little more than an exercise in scale practice. The MIDI files below contain some of the chansons and madrigals which were used as division models, and I hope that fellow-players of this repertoire will find them useful.

I will, in time, add more midi files to the list below.

Chansons and Madrigals in MIDI format

Oncques amor by Thomas Crecquillon (8 KB .mid file)
Io son ferito, ahi lasso by Roland de Lassus (8 KB .mid file)

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