Sunday, October 04, 2015
Werther and Tallis
On Friday we saw our friend Carolyn Dobbin in the ETO's excellent production of Werther. This was the first date at the RCM but there are plenty of others. In addition to Carolyn I'd single out Lauren Zolezzi and Michael Druiett but the whole cast was strong. Catch it if you can!
Apparently there is an anecdote that Tallis composed it in response to a ducal challenge for an English composer to respond to Alessandro Strigio's two (related) 40-part works. "The work remained completely unknown until James I presented Nonsuch Palace to his heir, Prince Henry, and the score was discovered in the library.
The concert was conducted by Robert Hollingworth one of the masters of Renaissance conducting and the founder of I Fagiolini. I'm told that there was a slight muddle in Choirs 7 and 8 at one point but I certainly didn't notice and the whole effect was magnificent! Though as will be seen below, I had a family interest.
* The programme note was by Son, who was in the choir along with Daughter-in-Law and Younger Grandson!