As England's greatest composer of the Baroque, Henry Purcell was dubbed the "Orpheus Britannicus" for his ability to combine pungent English counterpoint with expressive, flexible, and dramatic word settings. While he did write instrumental music, including the important viol fantasias, the vast majority of his output was in the vocal/choral realm. His only opera, Dido and Aeneas, divulged his sheer mastery in the handling of the work's vast expressive canvas, which included lively dance numbers, passionate arias and rollicking choruses. Purcell also wrote much incidental music for stage productions, including that for Dryden's King Arthur. His church music includes many anthems, devotional songs, and other sacred works, but few items for Anglican services. Purcell was born in 1659 to Henry Purcell, master of choristers at Westminster ...
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Composition Highlights

Title Year Avg. Duration Genre
The Fairy Queen, semi-opera, Z. 629 1689 01:56:50 Vocal Music
Dido and Aeneas, opera, Z. 626 1689 45:27 Opera
Come ye sons of art away (Birthday ode for Queen Mary), for soloists, chorus & instruments, Z. 323 1694 13:54 Choral
Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary, march and canzona for orchestra, Z. 860 1695 04:32 Choral
The Tempest, or, The Enchanted Island, semi-opera, Z. 631 1695 55:07 Vocal Music Opera
Fantasias (15) for viols 1680 09:19 Chamber Music
Hear my prayer, O Lord, anthem for chorus, violins & continuo, Z. 15 (unfinished) 1681 02:33 Choral
Sonata [Suite] for trumpet, 2 violins, viola & continuo in D major, Z. 850 1690 05:10 Chamber Music
The Indian Queen, semi-opera, Z. 630 1695 01:02:58 Vocal Music Opera
King Arthur, or, The British Worthy, semi-opera, Z. 628 1691 01:26:38 Vocal Music Opera
Prophetess, or The History of Dioclesian, semi-opera, Z. 627 1690 01:18:52 Vocal Music Opera
Sonata in 3 parts for two violins, bass viol & continuo No. 7 in E minor, Z. 796 1680 07:46 Chamber Music
O solitude, my sweetest choice, song, Z. 406 1687 05:26 Vocal Music
Chacony, for 4 strings in G minor, Z. 730 1678 05:27 Chamber Music
Sonata in 4 parts for two violins, bass viol & continuo No. 1 in B minor, Z. 802 1680 06:20 Chamber Music
Fantasia upon a ground, for 3 violins (or recorders) & continuo in D major/F major, Z. 731 1680 04:59 Chamber Music
Hail, bright Cecilia (Ode for St. Cecilia's Day), for soloists, chorus & instruments, Z. 328 1692 49:35 Choral
If music be the food of love, song, Z. 379 (3 settings) 1692 02:52 Vocal Music
Now that the sun hath veiled his light, sacred song for soprano & continuo ("An Evening Hymn"), Z. 193 1687 04:31 Vocal Music
Rejoice in the Lord alway ("Bell Anthem"), anthem for alto, tenor, bass, chorus, strings & organ, Z. 49 1683 08:10 Choral
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