Purcell and Opera

For me, Purcell is all about opera.  Finally, at the close of the 17th century, we finally get a composer who can rival Monteverdi in presenting searing emotion in song.  Here are two of Purcell's more famous arias, performed by two great contemporary mezzo-sopranos, Susan Graham and Anne Sophie von Otter: Henry Purcell, Dido and … Continue reading Purcell and Opera

Baroque Music IV: Henry Purcell (1659-1695)

Henry Purcell is the first in a distressingly lengthy list of composers whose lives were cut short in their primes.  Purcell, arguably the greatest English composer of all-time, was dead by the age of 36, leaving behind a wealth of wonderful compositions.  Like Mozart, he died shortly after completing his great funeral mass (Purcell's was … Continue reading Baroque Music IV: Henry Purcell (1659-1695)