Henry Purcell (2002)

Sonatas and Theatre Music

Henry Purcell

Hailed in his time as the “English Orpheus” and remembered by the motto, “A greater musical genius England never had,” Henry Purcell (1659-1695) lived a tragically short, but incredibly productive life as a composer. His instrumental music forms a relatively small but impressive part of his total output, which includes dramatic music (opera and semi-opera), odes and welcome songs, sacred music, as well as secular vocal music. In the instrumental realm he wrote overtures, dances, and song tunes for various theatrical works, fantasias, In Nomines, harpsichord and organ music, as well as two collections of trio sonatas. This recording explores music for strings and continuo: four trio sonatas, as well as two instrumental suites from his Ayres for the Theatre (1697). We also include an instrumental work for three violins and continuo, “3 parts upon a ground.”


Chatham Baroque
Julie Andrijeski, baroque violin
Emily Davidson, baroque violin
Patricia Halverson, viola da gamba
Scott Pauley, theorbo, baroque guitar, & archlute

Scott Metcalfe, baroque violin & viola

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