204lect6 - the rondeau style of the opening air The...

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Lecture #6 – Summary and Terms We’ll look at the masque in Act 3 of Dryden’s semi-opera King Arthur , with music by Henry Purcell. First produced in 1691 at the Dorset Garden Theatre in London, this remains one of the most popular works by Purcell. A “semi-opera” is a peculiarly English genre, in which extended musical scenes are embedded in a spoken play. These mixtures of solo singing, choral singing and dance are often called “masques.” The music, whose text and recording are both available on this page, reveals a variety of national influences. From the French comes the concept of the masque, as well as
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Unformatted text preview: the rondeau style of the opening air. The recitatives exemplify Italian influence. Particularly English are the careful text-settings, with their word-painting, and the Hornpipe which concludes the excerpt. When reading the excerpt from Curtis Prices book, do not concern yourself with references to other scholars, or to other parts of the play. Rather, focus on the general description, especially that of the elements of spectacle (Cupid descends, the Cold Genius arises) and the wonderful text-setting. Terms semi-opera (dramatic opera) masque hornpipe...
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