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1615 and 1630 - these are the two dates delimiting the period from which the pieces on this CD were drawn, and each marks both an end and a beginning. In 1615, Giovanni Gabrieli’s Canzoni et Sonate were published posthumously. His music was still being imitated fifty years later. The year 1630 saw Venice ravished by the plague. Fifty thousand people died, including many singers and musicians working at San Marco, the most important musical institution of Venice.