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Pavans and Fantasies from the Age of Dowland


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John Holloway’s recordings for ECM New Series have included many exhilarating and inspired accounts of baroque small ensemble music, and cast new light on composers including Biber, Schmelzer, Veracini and Leclair. If little is known about the lives of Dario Castello and Giovanni Battista Fontana, subjects of Holloway’s newest disc, surviving works by both men show them to have ... Read more in Amazon's John Holloway Store

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Product details

  • Composer: John Dowland, Henry Purcell, William Lawes, John Jenkins, Thomas Morley, et al.
  • Audio CD (31 Mar 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: ECM New Series
  • ASIN: B00I87XAP4
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 59,586 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. John Dowland: Lachrimæ Antiquæ
2. Henry Purcell: Fantasy upon one note
3. John Dowland: Lachrimæ Antiquæ Novæ
4. William Lawes: 2 Airs for 4
5. John Dowland: Lachrimæ Gementes
6. John Jenkins: Fantasy No. 12 for 2 Trebles and Bass
7. John Dowland: Lachrimæ Tristes
8. Thomas Morley: Lamento for 2 from Canzonets for two voyces
9. John Dowland: Lachrimæ Coactæ
10. Matthew Locke: Fantasy for 2 Trebles and Bass from The Broken Consort
11. John Dowland: Lachrimæ Amantis
12. William Lawes: Fantasy in C for 5
13. John Dowland: Lachrimæ Veræ

Product Description

In this remarkable recording, baroque violinist John Holloway creates a programme around the Lachrimae Pavans by John Dowland. Threaded between Dowland's masterpieces are works of other major composers of his era - Henry Purcell, William Lawes, John Jenkins, Thomas Morley and Matthew Locke. In bringing together these pieces of strongly contrasting colour and character Holloway and his musicians give a vivid sense of the great flowering of consort music which took place in England in the 17th century.

John Dowland's Lachrimae Pavans is considered one of the greatest works in the canon of English chamber music. Based upon his famous song "Flow My Teares", the seven pavans - Seaven Teares, as Dowland called them - present an extraordinary exploration of the contrapuntal and harmonic possibilities offered by the theme.

Believing the composer offered possibility of performance by five string players without lute, Holloway and company play Dowland's pavans with the instrumentation of four violas and bass violin. As Holloway puts it: "As has been said of Dowland, his greatest works are inspired by a deeply felt tragic concept of life, and a preoccupation with tears, sin, darkness and death. With that in mind, this choice of instruments (rather than transposing the music into a higher key) made itself."

One of the most experienced concertmasters in the 'Early Music' world, John Holloway has led orchestras for such diverse directors as William Christie, Christopher Hogwood, Gustav Leonhardt, Ton Koopman, Jean-Claude Malgoire, Nicholas McGegan, and was for many years leader of Roger Norrington's London Classical Players and Andrew Parrott's Taverner Players. In 1999 he was appointed Professor of Violin (modern and baroque) and Chamber Music at the Hochschule für Musik in Dresden. Since 1997 he has made a number of acclaimed recordings for ECM New Series, including Bach's Sonatas and Partitas for Violin solo, Biber, Schmelzer, Muffat, Leclair, Castello and others.

Personnel: John Holloway (violin, viola), Monika Baer (violin, viola), Renate Steinmann (violin), Susanna Hefti (viola), Martin Zeller (bass violin)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Sid Nuncius #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on 10 April 2014
Format: Audio CD
This is a lovely disc of English consort music from the 17th century. Calling some of this music "from the age of Dowland" may be stretching it a little, but it's still a very fine programme of fabulous music, excellently played.

The programme is based around Dowland's Seaven Teares, a sequence of pavans based on his song Flow My Tears. They are fantastic pieces, full of contrapuntal and harmonic invention and here they are interleaved with pavans by Purcell, Lawes, Jenkins and Locke. It works extremely well as a whole; every piece is exceptionally good and having a sort of palate-cleanser between the Dowland Lachrimae keeps them fresh right to the end, which I haven't always found with other versions that play them one after another.

John Holloway is a fantastic violinist with a very distinguished discography behind him, which is why I tried this disc. I wasn't disappointed. It is beautifully realised and played. The consort play on four violas and a bass violin, giving a suitably rich, dark tone and the wholeness of the sound and of the ensemble playing is a delight. I have some fine recordings of these pieces by great viol consorts like Fretwork and Phantasm; these are musically just as good and it's a very fine disc indeed.

As always with ECM, recorded sound is superb and the presentation is beautiful. John Holloway's notes are readable and very interesting. This is a very, very good disc all round; I love it and recommend it very warmly.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
A lovely disc 10 April 2014
By Sid Nuncius - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is a lovely disc of English consort music from the 17th century. Calling some of this music "from the age of Dowland" may be stretching it a little, but it's still a very fine programme of fabulous music, excellently played.

The programme is based around Dowland's Seaven Teares, a sequence of pavans based on his song Flow My Tears. They are fantastic pieces, full of contrapuntal and harmonic invention and here they are interleaved with pavans by Purcell, Lawes, Jenkins and Locke. It works extremely well as a whole; every piece is exceptionally good and having a sort of palate-cleanser between the Dowland Lachrimae keeps them fresh right to the end, which I haven't always found with other versions that play them one after another.

John Holloway is a fantastic violinist with a very distinguished discography behind him, which is why I tried this disc. I wasn't disappointed. It is beautifully realised and played. The consort play on four violas and a bass violin, giving a suitably rich, dark tone and the wholeness of the sound and of the ensemble playing is a delight. I have some fine recordings of these pieces by great viol consorts like Fretwork and Phantasm; these are musically just as good and it's a very fine disc indeed.

As always with ECM, recorded sound is superb and the presentation is beautiful. John Holloway's notes are readable and very interesting. This is a very, very good disc all round; I love it and recommend it very warmly.
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