PURCELL

Henry Purcell

Henry Purcell, (born c. 1659 — died November 21, 1695, London), An English composer of the middle Baroque period, most remembered for his more than 100 songs; a tragic opera, Dido and Aeneas; and his incidental music to a version of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream called The Fairy Queen.

Purcell, the most important English composer of his time, composed music covering a wide field: the church, the stage, the court, and private entertainment. In all these branches of composition he showed an obvious admiration for the past combined with a willingness to learn from the present, particularly from his contemporaries in Italy. With alertness of mind went an individual inventiveness that marked him as the most original English composer of his time as well as one of the most original in Europe.

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