Monteverdi Vespers

"To edit it is to receive the kiss of death as a scholar. To perform it is to court disaster."
Denis Arnold, 'More Monteverdi Vespers', Musical Times, 1967, vol 108, p. 637.

"Hopefully, those who perform the Monteverdi Vespers will pay attention to the research which demonstrates that for Monteverdi’s contemporaries, it may have involved a variety of choices, but no problems at all."
Jeffrey Kurtzman, 'Resolving the Controversies over the Monteverdi Vespers', Historical Performance 2 (2020), pp. 91–160

Ancient Groove Music is proud to announce the release of a new edition of the Baroque masterwork, Claudio Monteverdi's Vespro della Beata Vergine of 1610. The edition is designed to be completely customizable to the customers’ requirements. We can therefore produce 'bespoke' editions of the Vespers.

This work has been the subject of a considerable amount of musicological research over the last 50 years by leading scholars and historically informed performers, such as Jeffrey Kurtzman, Uwe Wolf, Roger Bowers, Andrew Parrott, Paul McCreesh, Clifford Bartlett and others. Transposition; proportional relationships of tempi; the extent of instrumental doubling.

This exciting new edition hopes to accommodate the range of different performance choices, and to help performers make their own decisions, by providing suggestions based on the latest scholarship, as well as feasible alternatives. At the same time, it maintains standards of authority and scholarship with critical notes, ossia variants, footnotes and all editorial contributions clearly marked. The music is presented in an attractive layout, and the scores and parts are also available in a range of options. Individual customizations can be produced on request.

The Edition

Editorial features of this edition include:

  • Rhythmic suggestions for falsobordone bars
  • Indications for 'solo' and 'tutti' passages in the psalms
  • Suggestions for tempi and proportional relationships between time signatures
  • Options for instrumental doubling
  • Alternative readings in ossia staves and footnotes

All of which can be easily ignored by conductors with their own ideas! Or alternatives can be created.


The edition is supplied 'by default' with Lauda Jerusalem and the Magnificat  down a fourth. The music is also available at original pitch or in other transposition schemes.


Following the instruments named in the 1610 print, the edition provides parts with colla voce doubling, as following:

Cantus (“Cornetto 1”)
Cantus (“Violino 1”)

Sextus (“Cornetto 2”)
Sextus (“Violino 2”)
Altus & Altus 2 (“Viola 1”): C clef
Altus & Altus 2  (“Cornetto 3”): G clef (other?)
Tenor & Tenor 2 (“Alto Trombone/Viola 2”): C clef
Quintus & Quintus 2 (“Trombone 2/Violoncello 1”)
Bassus, Bassus 2 (“Trombone doppio/basso/Violoncello 2/Contrabasso”)
Bassus generalis

There are also two parts for the briefly used woodwind in the Magnificat.

Up to Top

Fully Customised!

The edition is supplied as a 'standard' score, detailing the music as it appears in the 1610 print. A 'conductor's score' and instrumental parts are available on request, showing whatever instrumental doubling is required. Most importantly of all, the benefits of computerized music notation mean that it is very easy to provide customized editions to order — parts for additional instrumentation, other transposition schemes — giving the fullest range of interpretations of this flexible work.


If you have any questions about this exciting new edition: things you would like to see included; options you would like made available; or enquiries about parts and customization, please contact us! (Email address at the top of the page.)

Download the Score of Monteverdi Vespers

Missa in illo tempore

Monteverdi's Mass setting, which accompanies the Vespers in the 1610 publication, is also available. It is described as being 'for six voices', though it actually requires eight (SSAATTBB, plus bassus generalis). It uses the same chiavette alte (high clefs) as the Magnificat, which suggests downward transposition. We are happy to supply it in a range of transpositions, on request.

Download Missa in illo tempore

Up to Top