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Friday Arts Feature - What Is Our Life?

by Chauncey Tinker – 27 Sep 2019

Image By Unknown - http://artuk.org/discover/artworks/orlando-gibbons-221320, Public Domain, Link

Although just a contemporary of William Byrd (who I mentioned in an earlier post about the Elizabethan era), Orlando Gibbons came of age as the reign of the Stuarts began. His name is not so well known today, but he was the foremost English composer of his time, and he was appointed as a Gentleman of the Chapel Royal by James I in 1603. Tragically his life was cut short by illness in his 41st year, but nonetheless he composed many works, including vocal works and many instrumental works for keyboard.

Here is one of my favourite pieces by Gibbons, a madrigal (4 minutes long) from a very fine book of madrigals written in 1612, here sung by Emma Kirkby who is accompanied by a choir and viols:

Here is another performance sung by unaccompanied choir:

Another example of his work, an entertaining chorus of street vendors:

Have a good weekend everyone.


From Wikipedia:

Orlando Gibbons 1583 – 1625

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