Fortune My Foe
Some of the finest composers of 17th-century England spent most of their career in other countries. For some, this was a professional consideration, while others were avoiding religious discrimination or the long arm of the law! The most famous is John Dowland, the melancholy lutenist who became England’s foremost musical ambassador to northern Europe, but there were many others such as violinist Thomas Simpson and viol player/mercenary soldier Tobias Hume. Their work informed a whole generation of Continental composers. Our program features music of these talented English expatriates, including works by Peter Phillips and original arrangements of keyboard pieces by John Bull.
With Michael Barrett, tenor & recorder
Live concert recording 2006
|A Brave Barrel of Oysters
Perhaps the English language’s most famous diarist, Samuel Pepys was a prosperous civil servant and bon vivant in Restoration London. The diaries he kept from 1660-1668 provide a fascinating glimpse of life under the reign of the “merry monarch” Charles II. An enthusiastic amateur musician who sang and played the lute, viol, and flageolet, Pepys chronicled his experience making music with the best and worst musicians in town! STS brings this bustling, bewigged, and bawdy London to life with readings from the diaries and musical works by Hume, Blagrave, Young, and Locke, all of whom were friends of Pepys.
With Michael Barrett, tenor & recorder, and Kyle Parrish, narrator
Live concert recording 2008
Rantin’ Pipe and Tremblin’ String
The music of 17th- and 18th-century Scotland fuses homespun folk music with refined classical features. English music lovers, homesick Scots, and Italian composers all found themselves bewitched by these simple melodies. Seven Times Salt explores this unique crossroads with works by Purcell, Matteis, and Barsanti; traditional tunes for fiddle and pipes; and selections from early Scots manuscripts. In Scottish drawing rooms and dance halls, the only difference between a fiddler and a violinist was the music in front of him!
With Shari Alise Wilson, soprano, and Alastair Thompson, harpsichord
Live concert recording 2010
|The Founder of the Feast
As the nights grew longer, farmers completed their harvest and turned their thoughts towards the many delights of Fall. Our program features a warming mix of songs about Martinmas and Guy Fawkes, autumnal tunes by Dowland, Peerson, Byrd and Bull; plus rousing ballads of hunting, harvest, and beer!
With Gerrod Pagenkopf, voice