Category Archives: Music

Claudio Monteverdi

Amazing Late Renaissance/Early Baroque composer, Claudio Giovanni Antonio Monteverdi, died on this day the 29th of November, 1643. Below is Monteverdi’s Magnificat: Born in 1567, Monteverdi was one of the major transitional composers to span the Renaissance to the Baroque, and in doing so, composed some of the most beautiful music of his time. Here is Monteverdi’s “Lamento… Read on

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Johannes Bach

Today’s Baroque Birthday Boy is none other than a Bach! Johannes Bach, German Baroque composer & member of the musically talented Bach family, was born on this day 26 November, 1604. Johannes was brother to Christoph Bach and Heinrich Bach – both musicians and composers themselves.  Christoph was the father of Johann Christoph Bach and grandfather of the brilliant Bach: Johann Sebastian Bach. Let… Read on

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Jean Baptiste Senaillé

Jean Baptiste Senaillé, French Baroque composer, was born on this day the 23rd of November, 1687. According to Naxos, Jean Baptiste was the son of a violinist to the King and he became a pupil under Italian Baroque composer Tomaso Antonio Vitali, in Italy. When he returned to France, he became a member of le Chambre du Roi. Not much… Read on

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Henry Purcell

Henry Purcell, arguably the greatest English composer of Baroque music, died on this day the 21st of November, 1695. Henry Purcell had been born in late 1659, so that means he was around thirty-six years old at the time of his death. I always find this quite sad, for him – and for us – that he did… Read on

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The Birth of François Couperin

François Couperin, also known as Couperin le Grand, French Baroque composer, was born on this day the 10th of November, 1668 (New Style), in Paris, France.     I was first exposed to Couperin’s music when I was a little girl, listening to the radio programme, Sunday Baroque. Later, when I had moved out of America, I listened to Baroque… Read on

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Tous Les Matins du Monde

Tous Les Matins du Monde is a beautiful, captivating, heart-rending film about real-life 17th century French Baroque composer Marin Marais. This film, from 1991, which stars Gérard Depardieu as Marais, and Depardieu’s own son, Guillaume as the young Marais is stunning. Marin Marais was born in 1656 and died in 1728, and he was a viol player and a composer of Baroque… Read on

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A Double Baroque Birthday!

Two very talented Baroque composers were born on this day October 26th in the 17th century! The first one was Domenico Scarlatti, Italian Baroque composer, & son of Alessandro Scarlatti, was born on this day 26 October, 1685. 1685 was a big year for the birth of major Baroque composers, such as J.S. Bach and Handel, and this Scarlatti is no… Read on

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“A Dialogue Upon a Kiss” – Henry Lawes

English composer Henry Lawes died on this day the 21st of October, 1662. This piece is beautifully performed by: Francine van der Heijden – soprano. Sytse Buwalda – counter tenor. David van Ooijen – lute.

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Domenico Zipoli’s Birthday!

Domenico Zipoli Italian Baroque composer and Jesuit missionary to South America, was born on this day 17th October, 1688. Here is a piece played by the amazing Ernst Stolz: And another, “Confitebor tibi Domine”:

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Heinrich Schütz’s Birthday

Heinrich Schütz was born on this day 8 October (O.S) 1585. Now, some of you may wonder why I’m celebrating the birth of someone in the 16th century, so the reason is this: Schütz was a very influential composer of the Baroque. I’m only sorry that I didn’t know about this composer until only in the past five years,… Read on

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Sebastian Anton Scherer

Sebastian Anton Scherer, German Baroque composer and organist, was born on this day the 3rd of October, 1631 in Ulm. In celebration of the birth of this composer, we have for our listening pleasure an andante:

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The Death of Antonio Cifra

Antonio Cifra, Italian Baroque & Late Renaissance composer, died on this day the 2nd of October, 1629. Cifra is important in Early Music because he straddled the Late Renaissance and the Early Baroque movements and made beautiful music in both. So, in honour of Antonio Cifra, here is “Era la Notte:” Links about Antonio Cifra: http://www.hoasm.org/VG/Cifra.html http://www.last.fm/music/Antonio+Cifra http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonio_Cifra (I normally don’t like to link… Read on

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Lamenti – Le Concert d`Astrée

I received this beautiful, luscious album for my birthday recently and it has blown me away! “Lamenti” performed by many of today’s greatest opera singers and Le Concert d`Astrée under the direction of harpsichordist Emmanuelle Haim is a moving compilation of various works of Baroque. I have been a big fan of Philippe Jaroussky‘s albums since I heard him… Read on

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A Visit to Exeter Cathedral

I recently went to Exeter to visit some of my husband’s friends and also to do some research at Exeter Cathedral – which is a very impressive cathedral. William of Orange (King William III) came here during his progress during the Glorious Revolution of 1688, so it was imperative for my research to come here. I firmly believe… Read on

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La Boheme film

This film adaptation is outstanding and excellently cast with the great Rolando Villazon and the beautiful Anna Netrebko. Quite possibly Puccini’s greatest opera – La Boheme. It is also one of my favourite operas, for the musical quality is quite grand and memorable. Songs like “Quando M’en Vo” “Mi Chiamano Mimi” and others stand out as exceptionally great… Read on

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Murray Perahia at the Barbican

Last night, my husband and I attended the Murray Perahia piano recital at the Barbican Centre in London. It began at 7:30 in the evening and we were seated in the right side of the theatre’s C section, seats 16 and 17 in the Balcony section (as last time we sat in the Circle section for Philippe Jaroussky)… Read on

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Beautiful Scene – Scent of a Woman

What woman wouldn’t want to be whisked onto a dancefloor to dance the irresistably sensuous Tango? I sure couldn’t refuse. Music by Carlos Gardel titled, “Por Una Cabeza.”

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“Over the Rainbow” – London Audition Experience

I have just returned home from Covent Garden where I participated in an audition for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s new production of The Wizard of Oz. It was a very interesting experience and rewarding on numerous levels. I arrived at the Kingsway Hotel where I found a long line stretching around the corner from the hotel entrance. There were… Read on

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Der Rosenkavalier

I recently saw this opera at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. Whilst the production was lavish and visually stunning, the music was not at all as good as I had been led to believe it was. I personally am no fan of Wagner – not as a person nor as a composer – and this is… Read on

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A Meeting with Philippe Jaroussky

Last night at the Barbican Centre, my husband and I were entranced by the mesmerising beauty of Philippe Jaroussky’s voice and the talented ensemble of Concerto Koln (Cologne). What a great night for Baroque music it was! With an impressive opening with “The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba” by Handel, the evening went from strength to strength.… Read on

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L’Elisir d’Amore by Gaetano Donizetti

My husband and I saw this recently in Paris at the Opera Bastille, where it was performed by Tatiana Lisnic (Adina) and Charles Castronovo (Nemorino) along with an impressive, equally talented chorus. While not as grand and traditional as the Opera Garnier, the Opera Bastille has great acoustics and is very modern (for those who like that sort… Read on

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Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 3

This is my most favourite music in all the world. I have loved it since I was a little girl. It’s sweeping strings and haunting melody must be the most beautiful work in Brahms’ repertoire.

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