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Purcell's Contemporaries

Duration: 51:35

Donald Macleod introduces the composers of Restoration England who, from today's perspective, stand in the shadow of the greatest of the era, Henry Purcell.

This brilliant generation of composers that first emerged as choristers at the Chapel Royal after the Restoration, include a musical spy and a heartbroken composer who shot himself on the toss of a coin.

Secular music also flourished in the English Restoration court as music was placed increasingly high up the list of royal entertainment. Donald Macleod surveys the requirements placed on the composers to the royal family, including a talented Catalan violinist who enraged his contemporaries for his poor use of English.

There was an increasing importance of music outside of the English Restoration court, including a booming publishing industry and the growth of public concerts

Concluding his survey of the music of Purcell's day, Donald Macleod looks at the composers who contributed to London's theatre scene in what was a short career for English opera in the second half of the 17th century.

Available since: Tue 26 Apr 2011

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Purcell's Contemporaries

Donald Macleod introduces the composers of Restoration England

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