Henry Purcell

Baroque composer. Born 10 September 1659. Died 21 November 1695
Henry Purcell
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1659-09-10
https://musicbrainz.org/artist/ddea5540-2c7d-4266-8507-b367c2635d35
Henry Purcell

Henry Purcell Biography (BBC)

Born in London in 1659, Henry Purcell was the son of a musician in the retinue of Charles II, and it was royal service that was largely to be his world as well. By the time he was 10 he was a chorister at the Chapel Royal, and in 1673, when his voice broke, he became for a while an unpaid assistant to the keeper of the king’s instruments.

His first formal royal appointment came in 1677, when he was created composer-in-ordinary for the violins (in succession to Matthew Locke), and in 1682 he was appointed as one of the organists at the Chapel Royal. In between, he had also become organist of Westminster Abbey (in succession to his teacher and friend, John Blow).

The last years of Charles’s reign were when Purcell composed the bulk of his outstanding output of English church music, culminating in the superb anthems he supplied for the coronation of Charles’s successor, James II, in 1685. His court connections were also responsible for the numerous odes he composed for royal occasions such as birthdays and homecomings, an unpromising genre that he managed to raise to unwonted heights.

The 1680s also saw him beginning to write for the theatre, contributing songs and instrumental pieces to plays by such distinguished Restoration dramatists as Dryden, Congreve and D’Urfey. But it was in 1690 that his theatrical career really took off with the success of Dioclesian, his first venture into the peculiarly English genre of the time, known today as ‘semi-opera’, in which music is mixed with speech. This was followed over the next few years by three works – King Arthur (with words by Dryden); The Fairy Queen (loosely based on A Midsummer Night’s Dream); and The Indian Queen (words again by Dryden) – all written in a similar style.

It is not clear for what purpose Purcell wrote his only through-composed opera, Dido and Aeneas; its first known performance was by pupils at a girls’ boarding school in Chelsea in 1689, but it may have been first produced as a court entertainment some years earlier.

Purcell occupies a central position in British music. More than 300 years after his death he is still arguably the country’s greatest composer, and his music continues to provide successors with both inspiration and a point of cultural identification. Apparent in his church music, stage works and solo songs alike are an exquisite talent for English word-setting, a gift for attractive melody and a capacity for searing expressiveness that have attracted commendation from his own time to ours; he was acclaimed in his own day as ‘the English Orpheus’ and Holst, Vaughan Williams, Britten and Tippett were among his greatest 20th-century admirers. His untimely death at the age of 36 left Britain without a native composer of genius until the arrival of Elgar two centuries later.

Profile © Lindsay Kemp

Henry Purcell Biography (Wikipedia)

Henry Purcell ( or; c. 10 September 1659 – 21 November 1695) was an English composer. Although incorporating Italian and French stylistic elements into his compositions, Purcell's legacy was a uniquely English form of Baroque music. He is generally considered to be one of the greatest English composers; no later native-born English composer approached his fame until Edward Elgar, Ralph Vaughan Williams, William Walton and Benjamin Britten in the 20th century.

This entry is from Wikipedia, the user-contributed encyclopedia. It may not have been reviewed by professional editors and is licensed under an Attribution-ShareAlike Creative Commons License. If you find the biography content factually incorrect or highly offensive you can edit this article at Wikipedia. Find out more about our use of this data.

Henry Purcell Performances & Interviews


Henry Purcell Tracks

Henry Purcell
Jehova, quam multi sunt hostes mei (Z.135)
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Jehova, quam multi sunt hostes mei (Z.135)

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Henry Purcell
See, we assemble (King Arthur)
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See, we assemble (King Arthur)
Henry Purcell
King Arthur; Act 4 sc.2, no.29; Two daughters of this aged stream
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King Arthur; Act 4 sc.2, no.29; Two daughters of this aged stream
Henry Purcell
From silent shades (Bess of Bedlam)
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From silent shades (Bess of Bedlam)
Henry Purcell
The Virtuous wife, or Good luck at last; Slow air
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The Virtuous wife, or Good luck at last; Slow air
Henry Purcell
Dido's Lament arr Rees-Williams
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Dido's Lament arr Rees-Williams
Henry Purcell
When I am laid in earth (Dido and Aeneas)
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When I am laid in earth (Dido and Aeneas)
Henry Purcell
Sound the trumpet (Come ye sons of art)
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Sound the trumpet (Come ye sons of art)
Henry Purcell
Pavan in G minor Z.752
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Pavan in G minor Z.752
Henry Purcell
Four Works
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Four Works
Henry Purcell
Come Ye Sons of Art
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Come Ye Sons of Art
Henry Purcell
Chacony
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Chacony
Henry Purcell
Sonata No.6 for 2 violins and continuo in G minor (Z.807)
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Sonata No.6 for 2 violins and continuo in G minor (Z.807)
Henry Purcell
Thy hand Belinda ... When I am laid in earth (from Dido and Aeneas)
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Thy hand Belinda ... When I am laid in earth (from Dido and Aeneas)
Henry Purcell
A New Ground in E minor
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A New Ground in E minor
Henry Purcell
Hear my prayer, O Lord
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Hear my prayer, O Lord
Henry Purcell
Hail, bright Cecilia Z.328 (Hail, bright Cecilia)
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Hail, bright Cecilia Z.328 (Hail, bright Cecilia)
Henry Purcell
The Princess of Persia
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The Princess of Persia
Henry Purcell
King Arthur, Z.628 (Overture)
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King Arthur, Z.628 (Overture)
Henry Purcell
Prelude in C
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Prelude in C
Henry Purcell
Music for a while (Oedipus)
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Music for a while (Oedipus)
Henry Purcell
Suite in G major
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Suite in G major
Henry Purcell
Pavan in G minor
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Pavan in G minor
Henry Purcell
O Solitude, My Sweetest Choice
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O Solitude, My Sweetest Choice
Henry Purcell
Fairest isle (King Arthur)
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Fairest isle (King Arthur)
Henry Purcell
The Plaint
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The Plaint

The Plaint

Performer
Mary Bevan
Dylan Perez
Last played on
Henry Purcell
Sweeter than Roses
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Sweeter than Roses

Sweeter than Roses

Performer
Mary Bevan
Dylan Perez
Last played on
Henry Purcell
The Duke of Gloucester's trumpet suite
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The Duke of Gloucester's trumpet suite
Michael Chance, New College Choir, Oxford, The Kings Consort & Robert King & Henry Purcell
Come Ye Sons of Art, Away
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Come Ye Sons of Art, Away

Come Ye Sons of Art, Away

Performer
Michael Chance, New College Choir, Oxford, The Kings Consort & Robert King
Henry Purcell
Trumpet Suite
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Trumpet Suite

Trumpet Suite

Performer
Blagoj Angelovski
Velin Iliev
Henry Purcell
Come Ye Sons of Art, away (Chorus & Sound the Trumpet)
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Come Ye Sons of Art, away (Chorus & Sound the Trumpet)
Henry Purcell
The Fairy Queen: Ye gentle spirits of the air
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The Fairy Queen: Ye gentle spirits of the air
Henry Purcell
The Fairy Queen: I am come to lock all fast
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The Fairy Queen: I am come to lock all fast
Henry Purcell
The Married Beau, or The Curious Impertinent, Z. 603 - Hornpipe
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The Married Beau, or The Curious Impertinent, Z. 603 - Hornpipe
Henry Purcell
Chacony in G minor, Z730
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Chacony in G minor, Z730

Chacony in G minor, Z730

Ensemble
Psophos Quartet
Henry Purcell
Sonata No 4 in D minor, Z 805
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Sonata No 4 in D minor, Z 805
Henry Purcell
WHEN I AM LAID IN EARTH (DIDO & AENEAS)
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WHEN I AM LAID IN EARTH (DIDO & AENEAS)
Henry Purcell
Sonata in two parts
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Sonata in two parts
Henry Purcell
Sonata - 1683 no. 9 in C minor Z.798 for 2 violins and continuo
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Sonata - 1683 no. 9 in C minor Z.798 for 2 violins and continuo
Henry Purcell
When I am laid in earth (Dido and Aeneas)
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When I am laid in earth (Dido and Aeneas)
Henry Purcell
Fairy Queen (Masque of the Seasons - conclusion)
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Fairy Queen (Masque of the Seasons - conclusion)
Henry Purcell
Fairest isle (King Arthur)
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Fairest isle (King Arthur)
Henry Purcell
March
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March
Henry Purcell
Music for a while
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Music for a while
Henry Purcell
Music for a while
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Music for a while
Henry Purcell
Dido and Aeneas
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Dido and Aeneas
Henry Purcell
Curtain Tune (Timon of Athens)
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Curtain Tune (Timon of Athens)
Henry Purcell
King Arthur (Chaconne)
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King Arthur (Chaconne)
Henry Purcell
What pow'r art thou (King Arthur)
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What pow'r art thou (King Arthur)
Henry Purcell
Rondeau, Bourée, March, Jig (The Old bachelor)
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Rondeau, Bourée, March, Jig (The Old bachelor)
Henry Purcell
Wayward sisters / Ruin'd ere the set of the sun (Dido And Aeneas, Z.626)
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Wayward sisters / Ruin'd ere the set of the sun (Dido And Aeneas, Z.626)
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Past BBC Events

Proms 2018: Prom 20: Ten Pieces Prom
https://www.bbc.co.uk/events/ebhz3d
Royal Albert Hall
2018-07-29T05:16:03
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29
Jul
2018
Proms 2018: Prom 20: Ten Pieces Prom

Proms 2018: Prom 20: Ten Pieces Prom

Royal Albert Hall
Proms 2018: Prom 19: Ten Pieces Prom
https://www.bbc.co.uk/events/e94wxj
Royal Albert Hall
2018-07-29T05:16:03
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/208x117/p061r7gy.jpg
29
Jul
2018
Proms 2018: Prom 19: Ten Pieces Prom

Proms 2018: Prom 19: Ten Pieces Prom

Royal Albert Hall

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