I feel privileged to

have been a part

of the Choir’s


Jonathan Brown, bass, former Organ Scholar (1993-96)
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Purcell Dido and Aeneas

Original release date: 2001

It was probably in 1684-85, a year or two after the first performance of John Blow's Venus and Adonis which was clearly his model, that Purcell composed Dido and Aeneas, now recognised as one of the great monuments of opera. The sudden death of Charles II, for whose court it was commissioned, may have meant it was not actually produced until the performance given in a girls' school in Chelsea in 1689, long thought to have been the occasion for which it was written. The skilful construction of Dido and Aeneas, with that rich mixture of comic and tragic elements so characteristic of 17th century English theatre, perfectly illustrates Purcell's extraordinary dramatic sense.

Dido:  Lynne Dawson | Soprano
Belinda:  Rosemary Joshua | Soprano
Aeneas:  Gerald Finley | Baritone
Second Woman:  Maria Cristina Kiehr | Soprano
Sorceress:  Susan Bickley | Soprano
First Witch:  Dominique Visse | Contre-ténor
Second Witch:  Stephen wallace | Contre-ténor
Spirit:  Robin Blaze | Contre-ténor
First Sailor:  John Bowen | Ténor
The Choir of Clare College
Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment
René Jacobs | Director

  • Act 1: Overture
  • Act 1: Belinda "Shake The Cloud"
  • Act 1: Dido "Ah! Belinda, I Am Prest"
  • Act 1: Belinda "Grief Increase By Concealing"
  • Act 1: Chorus "When Monarchs Unite"
  • Act 1: Dido "Whence Could So Much Virtue Spring?"
  • Act 1: Belinda, Second Woman "Fear No Danger To Ensue"
  • Act 1: Belinda "See, Your Royal Guest Appears"
  • Act 1: Chorus "Cupid Only Throws The Dart"
  • Act 1: Aeneas "If Not For Mine"
  • Act 1: Belinda "Pursue Thy Conquest"
  • Act 1: Chorus "To The Hills & The Vales"
  • Act 2: Prelude For The Witches
  • Act 2: Chorus "Harm's Our Delight"
  • Act 2: Sorceress "The Queen Of Carthage"
  • Act 2: Chorus "Ho Ho Ho, Ho Ho Ho!"
  • Act 2: 2 Witches "But Ere We This Perform"
  • Act 2: Chorus "In Our Deep Vaulted Cell"
  • Act 2: Echo Dance Of Furies
  • Act 2: Ritornelle
  • Act 2: Belinda "Thanks To These Lovesome Vales"
  • Act 2: Second Woman "Oft She Visits This Lov'd Mountain"
  • Act 2: Aeneas "Behold, Upon My Bending Spear"
  • Act 2: Belinda "Haste, Haste To Town"
  • Act 2: Spirit "Stay, Prince & Hear Great Jove's Command"
  • Act 2: Chorus "Then Since Our Charmse Have Sped"
  • Act 2: The Groves Dance
  • Act 3: Prelude
  • Act 3: Chorus "Come Away, Fellow Sailors"
  • Act 3: Sorceress "See The Flags & Streamers Curling
  • Act 3: Sorceress "Our Next Motion"
  • Act 3: Chorus "Destruction's Our Delight"
  • Act 3: The Witches's Dance
  • Act 3: Dido "Your Counsel All Is Urged In Vain"
  • Act 3: Chorus "Great Minds Against Themselves Conspire"
  • Act 3: Dido "Thy Hand, Belinda"
  • Act 3: Dido "When I Am Laid In Earth"
  • Act 3: Chorus "With Dropping Wings Ye Cupids Come"