chapter  10
15 Pages

The “teatro delle acque”

Music and spectacle at Villa Aldobrandini during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries
WithGiulia Anna Romana Veneziano

A musical component was always present in the performances organized at Villa Aldobrandini as part of all the official visits held between the seventeenth and the beginning of the eighteenth century. The “teatro delle acque” hosted musical performances which were generated by hydraulic devices, and also the descriptions of the sound games in Apollo’s Room refer to the automata. Music was the norm in the Aldobrandini-Pamphili household, not only for private occasions but also for official ones, as for example the addottoramento of Benedetto which included a chapter of expenses, all incurred by Olimpia, for the musicians at the ceremony celebrated in the Church of Sant’Ignazio di Loyola in Rome in 1676. Patrizio Barbieri’s studies enable us to reconstruct the exact way in which every single element produced sounds, a mechanism that today no longer works.