Feb 012013

Jonah found a CD of Baroque hits in a used bookstore the other day and has been listening to this over and over. It was written as incidental music for a play by Aphra Behn, a 17th century English dramatist, a woman who made her living by the pen.

Here is the whole piece from which the Rondeau is taken.


And again, a performance video.

Abdalazar; or, The Moors Revenge was one of the last plays for which Purcell composed incidental music. First staged in 1695, the year of Purcell’s tragically early death at the age of 36, it was the work of Aphra Behn, one of a several prominent women playwrights who contributed to the vital and frequently bawdy (Behn was herself criticized for “lewdness”) theatrical scene in Restoration England. The music Purcell composed for Abdalazar consists of nine pieces scored for strings: Overture; Rondeau (Hornpipe); Air; Air; Minuet; Air; Jig; Hornpipe; Air.  (Excerpted from All Music)

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