Make a Joyful Noise Renaissance Art and Music at Florence Cathedral Gary M. Radke, Gabriele Giacomelli, Patrick Macey, Marica Tacconi, Timothy Verdon

Publication date:
27 Nov 2014
Yale University Press
96 pages: 305 x 187mm
80 color illus.
Sales territories:


Florence Cathedral, familiarly called Il Duomo, is an architectural masterpiece and home to celebrated works of art. The interrelationship between the brilliant art and architecture and the Cathedral’s musical program is explored in depth in this beautiful book. Perhaps the most beloved example is Luca della Robbia’s sculptural program for the organ loft, comprising ten sculptural relief panels that depict children singing, dancing, and making music. Luca’s charming sculptures are examined alongside luxurious illuminated manuscripts commissioned for musical performances. Essays by distinguished scholars provide new insights into the original function and meaning of Luca’s sculptures; organs and organists during the 15th century; the roles played by women and girls—as well as men and boys—in making music throughout Renaissance Florence; and the Cathedral’s illuminated choir books. 

Gary M. Radke is Dean’s Professor of the Humanities and professor of art history, Syracuse University. Gabriele Giacomelli is director of the Florence Cathedral concert series. Patrick Macey is professor of musicology, Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester. Marica S. Tacconi is professor of musicology and assistant director for research and graduate studies, Penn State School of Music. Timothy Verdon is director of the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, Florence.

‘The combination of works by art historians, musicians and musicologists is stimulating and results in a beautifully produced collection of illuminating and illuminated essays.’—Oliver Soders, Art Newspaper

“[Radke et. al] make accessible to an interdisciplinary readership the fruits of their expert scholarship, and are essential to understanding Luca’s Cantoria.”—Blake Wilson, Renaissance Quarterly