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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA66720
Recording details: March 1994
Orford Church, Suffolk, United Kingdom
Produced by Ben Turner
Engineered by Philip Hobbs
Release date: May 1994
Total duration: 2 minutes 28 seconds

Not all my torments can your pity move, Z400
composer
mid-1693
author of text

Other recordings available for download
Paul Esswood (countertenor), Johann Sonnleitner (harpsichord), Charles Medlam (viola da gamba)
James Bowman (countertenor), The King's Consort, Robert King (conductor)
Introduction  EnglishFrançais
Not all my torments is contained in the Gresham Manuscript, the autograph songbook written out by Purcell between 1692 and 1695. This song comes between movements from the birthday ode of April 1693, Celebrate this festival, and Sawney is a bonny lad, dated 25 January 1694, so may be presumed to have been written around the middle of 1693. Perhaps Purcell’s most florid song, representing the full extent of the ornate Italian influence, it seems strange that he did not include it in any published collection, and neither did it appear in Orpheus Britannicus. Robert Spencer has written that ‘this wonderful song always seems disappointingly short’, musing on whether Purcell planned an aria to follow, or even wrote one which got lost. That said, the four lines of verse do in themselves make a pithy and rather poignant entity which Purcell sets in an astonishingly colourful style, swinging from the impassioned opening, through the manically increasing scorn with which the poet’s love is greeted to the desolate sorrows that he will take to the grave. The rising optimism of the repeated ‘I love’ is countered by the final sting in the tail, ‘I despair’.

from notes by Robert King © 2003


Other albums featuring this work
'Purcell: Mr Henry Purcell's Most Admirable Composures' (CDH55303)
Purcell: Mr Henry Purcell's Most Admirable Composures
MP3 £4.99FLAC £4.99ALAC £4.99Buy by post £5.50 CDH55303  Helios (Hyperion's budget label)  
'Purcell: Music for a while & other songs' (CDA66070)
Purcell: Music for a while & other songs
MP3 £3.75FLAC £3.75ALAC £3.75Buy by post £13.99 (ARCHIVE SERVICE) CDA66070  Archive Service   Download currently discounted
'Purcell: The complete secular solo songs' (CDS44161/3)
Purcell: The complete secular solo songs
MP3 £15.00FLAC £15.00ALAC £15.00Buy by post £16.50 CDS44161/3  3CDs Boxed set (at a special price)  

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