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The Court of Mary, Queen of Scots

The Court of Mary, Queen of Scots: David McGuinness visits Stirling Castle and the Palace of Holyrood House to learn about music which may have been performed during Mary's reign.

David McGuinness visits Stirling Castle and the Palace of Holyrood House in Edinburgh, to trace the story of Mary Queen of Scots' reign, and the music which surrounded her. From the devotional masses and motets by Robert Carver - so popular with Mary's father, King James V, to the jolly French dances she would have enjoyed during her first marriage to Francis Dauphin of France, Mary remained a music lover throughout her short life. Queen Mary's favourite attendant and confidante during her second marriage to her cousin, Lord Henry Darnley, was an Italian musician called David Rizzio. Darnley and David Rizzio spent long hours together on the tennis court at Falkland Palace, but Darnley's jealousy grew at the Italian's familiarity with his new wife, and he planned to do away with Rizzio at the earliest opportunity. The political assassination that followed was carefully staged, with 500 armed men keeping the Palace of Holyrood House secure while Lord Ruthven and his accomplices burst in to Mary's chamber, where she and Rizzio were sharing supper with guests. Rizzio was dragged from the dinner table and stabbed more than 50 times in front of the Queen.

58 minutes

Music Played

  • Monty Python

    Mary Queen of Scots

    Performers: Monty Python

    • VIRGIN.
    • CDV 2748.
  • Robert Carver

    Mass à 3 (Kyrie & Gloria)

    Performers: Rob MacKillop (lute), Bill Taylor (bray harp)

    • DORIAN.
    • DIS-80141.
  • Anon.

    Rowallan Lute Book: Mary Betons Row/Current Tried

    Performer: Ronn MacFarlane (10-course lute)

    • DORIAN.
    • DOR 90257.
  • David Peebles

    Psalm 107

    Performers: Cappella Nova, Alan Tavener (conductor)

    • ASV.
    • CDGAU 136.
  • James Lauder

    My Lord of March Paven

    Performers: Concerto Caledonia

    • LIVE RECORDING.
  • David Peebles

    Si Quis Diligit Me

    Performers: Cappella Nova, Alan Tavener (conductor)

    • ASV.
    • CDGAU 136.
  • Pierre Cadéac

    Our Father God Celestial

    Performers: Baltimore Consort

    • DORIAN.
    • DOR-90139.
  • William Kinloch

    Kinloche his Fantassie

    Performer: John Kitchen (harpsichord)

    • ASV.
    • CD GAU134.
  • Anon.

    [The Art of Music c.1580] Richt soir opprest

    Performers: Custer LaRue (voice), Mark Cudek & Ronn MacFarlane (lutes)

    • DORIAN.
    • DOR-90314.
  • Monty Python

    Mary Queen of Scots

  • Robert Carver

    Kyrie from 'Mass in three parts'

  • Anonymous

    Mary Betons Row / Current Tried

  • David Peebles

    Psalm 107

  • James Lauder

    My Lord of March Paven

  • David Peebles

    Si Quis Diligit Me

  • Pierre Cadéac

    Our Father God Celestial

  • William Kinloch

    Kinloche his Fantassie

  • Anon.

    Richt soir opprest (from The Art of Music c.1580)

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