Ivan Lukačić in the light of older and newer knowledge


  • Ennio Stipčević Institute for the History of Croatian Literature, Croatian Academy of Science and Arts


Ivan Lukačić, Croatian baroque music, music historiography


We find the first bio-bibliographical data on Ivan Lukačić (c. 1585-1648) in the musical lexicons of Johannes Walther (1732), François Joseph Fétis (1860-1865), Robert Eitner (1877) and some other older bibliographic reference works. There is no mention of Lukačić during the 18th and 19th centuries. Even well-known bibliographers, such as Šime Ljubić and Ivan Kukuljević Sakcinski, do not mention him in their publications nor Franjo Ksaver Kuhač knew anything of Lukačić. In 1925, Josip Mantuani referred to Giacomo Finetti and alongside him Ivan Lukačić, too, including his Sacrae cantiones collection, in his study on the history of Franciscan music. A year earlier (1924), local church historian Niko Kalogjera also mentioned Lukačić as the organist of the Split Cathedral, but not knowing anything about his collection, cited in old music lexicons. The young musicologist Dragan Plamenac read Mantuani and Kalogjera’s notes. After a few years of research, Plamenac published the article “Unknown Croatian musician of the early Baroque Ivan Lukačić (1574-1648) and his motets” in the Zagreb daily Obzor at the end of 1934. This small newspaper article was a first-class cultural event and a great musical discovery in Croatia. At the end of 1935, he organized a concert From the Croatian musical past in the Croatian Music Institute with musical pieces of Vinko Jelić, Andrija Patricij (Andrea Patricio), Julije Skjavetić (Giulio Schiavetto [Schiavetti]), Tomaso Cecchini and Ivan Lukačić, so the Croatian public could suddenly enjoy the unimaginable richness of Croatian Renaissance and Baroque music. Plamenac was particularly impressed by the Sacrae cantiones collection. Plamenac found Lukačić’s collection of motets in the old Prussian State Library in Berlin. Due to newspaper articles, a well-organized concert at the Music Institute, and the edition of selected motets from the Sacrae cantiones collection - the music of Ivan Lukačić came to life again in the mid-1930s. E. Stipčević rediscovered the Sacrae cantiones collection in the Jagiellonian Library in Kraków in 1982. In the early 1980s, Lukačić’s opus integrated into new methodological tendencies and Croatian Baroque music was recognized in Europe. Ivan Lukačić, the composer, Conventual Franciscan, longtime maestro di cappella of the Cathedral of Split, is a typical “hero” of local historiography. In the collection of Sacrae cantiones, we recognize a valuable contribution to early Baroque contemporary aspirations.