madrigal, name for two different forms of Italian music, one related to the poetic madrigal in the 14th cent., the other the most common form of secular vocal music in the 16th cent. The poetic madrigal is a lyric consisting of one to four strophes of three lines followed by a two-line strophe called a ritornello. The most important 14th-century madrigal composers were Giovanni da Cascia (also known as Giovanni da Florentia) and Jacopo da Bologna (both fl. c.1350). Their madrigals are usually for two voices in long and florid melodic lines. The 16th-century madrigal is poetically a free imitation of its earlier counterpart; musically, it is unrelated. The earliest of these madrigals were usually homophonic in four and sometimes three parts, emotionally restrained, and lyric in spirit. The classic madrigals of Cipriano da Rore (1516-65), Andrea Gabrieli, Orlando di Lasso, and Filippo da Monte (1521-1603) were usually for five voices in a polyphonic and imitative style, the expression closely allied to the text. In the last part of the 16th cent. composers such as Luca Marenzio, Carlo Gesualdo (c.1560-1613), and Monteverdi intensified the expression of the text by the use of chromaticism, word painting, and declamatory effects. In the 17th cent. madrigal was used to designate certain expressive solo songs. In England the polyphonic madrigal had a late flowering in the Elizabethan era. Celebrated English madrigal composers include Byrd, Morley, Orlando Gibbons, Weelkes, and Wilbye.

See A. Einstein, The Italian Madrigal (3 vol., 1949); J. Kerman, The Elizabethan Madrigal (1962); J. Roche, The Madrigal (1972).

Madrigal usually refers to Madrigal (music), a European musical form of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries

Madrigal may also refer to:


  • Madrigal (Trecento), an Italian musical form of the fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries
  • Madrigal (ensemble) an early music group formed in 1965 by the Russian composer and harpsichord player Andrey Volkonsky
  • "Madrigal" (song), a song by the Canadian rock band Rush, from the album A Farewell to Kings
  • "Madrigal", a song by British progressive rock band Yes, from the album Tormato
  • "Madrigal", a song by Swedish progressive metal band Opeth, from the album My Arms, Your Hearse
  • "Madrigal", a song by Japanese band Malice Mizer, from the album Voyage ~Sans Retour~
  • Madrigal, a Canadian pop group who released the album Sunshine and Baked Beans in 1970
  • Madrigal, a British acid folk group who released the album Beneath the Greenwood Tree in 1973
  • Madrigal, an American psych group who released a self-titled album with theremin in the 1970s, Spyder 136
  • Madrigal, an American progressive rock group
  • Madrigal, a symphonic rock group from France who released the album School of Time in 1978
  • Madrigal, a gothic doom metal group from Sweden who released the album I Die, You Soar in 2001
  • Madrigal, a music album by Japanese singer Chara





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