The initial years of the seventeenth century witnessed an extraordinary musical development owing in large part to the achieve-ments of Italian composers. A decided advance occurred in the city of Bologna, where a group of brilliant composers open to stylistic innovations had gathered at the Basilica di San Petronio. In 1666, thanks to the initiative of the nobleman Vincenzo Maria Carrati, the Accademia Filarmonica was added to this vibrant musical panorama. During the second half of the eighteenth century, under Padre Giovanni Battista Martini, the Accademia would go on to experience its most glorious phase. From the very beginning this new institution could count on the participation of some prominent musicians active in Modena and Bologna. They included Giovanni Paolo Colonna, who had become acquainted with the famous Giacomo Carissimi in Rome. Carissimi introduced him to the resources of the sacred oratorio and offered him the organist’s post at the Chiesa di Sant’Apollinare. The Sacre lamentationi della Settimana Santa op. 9 shows how Colonna was able to generate the highest expressive power even with modest musical means. The intensive dramatic character rendered audible in this work moves listeners even today with its powerful contrasts between light and darkness – even with the simple means of a voice part and the basso continuo.