The Genius of Henry Purcell: A Live Musical Discussion with Peter Medhurst

The Genius of Henry Purcell: A Live Musical Discussion with Peter Medhurst


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Join lecturer and recitalist Peter Medhurst live from his piano in London for a musical conversation that will put English composer Henry Purcell’s genius in context.

Despite the fact that Henry Purcell (1659-95) met an early death at the age of 36, many things came right for him during the course of his career. For example, he was fortunate to be born into a household where music was the family trade, he secured as an adult a string of royal appointments, and he lived at a time when there was a renewed flowering of English music creating a healthy rivalry between himself and other high flying composers. However, pinning down Purcell’s compositional style is not quite as easy as one might imagine, since his music is an ingenious fusion of homegrown English techniques with the latest Italian ideas. The lecture sets out to get to the heart of Purcell’s style, to reveal one of the most remarkable musical geniuses of all time.

Led by a musician and scholar, Peter Medhurst, this interactive seminar will explore the life and work of Henry Purcell through discussion and live performance. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an understanding of what it is that gives Purcell’s music its unique sound.

This conversation is part of a musical series with Peter Medhurst. Each session is designed as a stand-alone seminar as well as part of the series.

Peter Medhurst appears in the UK and abroad as musician and scholar, giving recitals and delivering illustrated lectures on music and the arts. He studied composition and early keyboard instruments at the Royal College of Music in London, and singing with Erik Werba at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. He is known today for his lecture-recital work which has taken him to Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, as well as to all the major cities in Europe. He lectures for The Arts Society, The National Trust, and The Art Fund. Peter also leads tours abroad to places like Venice, Rome, Berlin, Vienna, and Madrid, and as part of the time spent exploring these places he gives organ recitals on the historic instruments in the various cathedrals and churches.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

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