The Sixteen brings its expertise in early English music to bear on the spectacular Restoration drama King Arthur.
Making its fourth consecutive appearance at the Festival, including the acclaimed performance of Purcell’s The Fairy Queen in 2009, The Sixteen brings its expertise in early English music to bear on the spectacular Restoration drama King Arthur.
With music by Purcell and a libretto by poet laureate John Dryden, the piece recounts not the legends of Camelot but the raging battles between King Arthur’s god-fearing Britons and the heathen Saxons to save Arthur’s intended, the blind Princess Emmeline of Cornwall. A masterpiece of 17th-century patriotism, it contains some of Purcell’s most lyrical and powerful music, with rousing martial episodes, tender arias including the famous ‘Fairest Isle’, and a glorious final vision of a united Britain.
‘Harry Christophers conducted with the lightest and sunniest of touches’ The Daily Telegraph
‘a measured, polished performance, stylishly articulated’ The Guardian
Sophie Bevan Soprano
Robert Murray Tenor
Jonathan Lemalu Bass baritone
Harry Christophers Conductor