John Ireland (composer)
John Nicholson Ireland was an English composer and teacher of music. The majority of his output consists of songs with piano, his best-known works include the short instrumental or orchestral work "The Holy Boy", a setting of the poem "Sea Fever" by John Masefield, a much-played Piano Concerto, the hymn tune Love Unknown and the choral motet "Greater Love Hath No Man". John Ireland was born in Bowdon, near Altrincham, into a family of Scottish descent and some cultural distinction, his father, Alexander Ireland, a publisher and newspaper proprietor, was aged 69 at John's birth. John was the youngest of the five children from Alexander's second marriage, his mother, Annie Elizabeth Nicholson Ireland, was 30 years younger than Alexander. She died in October 1893, when John was 14, Alexander died the following year, when John was 15. John Ireland was described as "a self-critical, introspective man, haunted by memories of a sad childhood". Ireland entered the Royal College of Music in 1893, studying piano with Frederic Cliffe, organ, his second study, under Walter Parratt.
From 1897 he studied composition under Charles Villiers Stanford. In 1896 Ireland was appointed sub-organist at Holy Trinity, Sloane Street, London SW1, from 1904 until 1926, was organist and choirmaster at St Luke's Church, Chelsea. Ireland began to make his name in the early 1900s as a composer of songs and chamber music, his Violin Sonata No. 1 of 1909 won first prize in an international competition organised by the well-known patron of chamber music W. W. Cobbett. More successful was his Violin Sonata No. 2: completed in January 1917, he submitted this to a competition organised to assist musicians in wartime. The jury included the violinist Albert Sammons and the pianist William Murdoch, who together gave the work its first performance at Aeolian Hall in New Bond Street on 6 March that year; as Ireland recalled, "It was the first and only occasion when a British composer was lifted from relative obscurity in a single night by a work cast in a chamber-music medium." The work was enthusiastically reviewed, the publisher Winthrop Rogers offered immediate publication.
A subsequent performance of the Violin Sonata by Ireland and the violinist Désiré Defauw drew a packed audience to the Wigmore Hall in London. Ireland visited the Channel Islands and was inspired by the landscape. In 1912 he composed the piano piece The Island Spell while staying on Guernsey, his set of three pieces for piano Sarnia: An Island Sequence was written there in 1940, he was evacuated from the islands just before the German invasion during World War II. From 1923 he taught at the Royal College of Music, his pupils there included Richard Arnell, Ernest John Moeran, Benjamin Britten, composer Alan Bush, Geoffrey Bush, who subsequently edited or arranged many of Ireland's works for publication, Anthony Bernard. John Ireland was a lifelong bachelor, except for a brief interlude when, in quick succession, he married and divorced. On 17 December 1926, aged 47, he married Dorothy Phillips; this marriage was dissolved on 18 September 1928, it is believed not to have been consummated. He took a similar interest in another young student, Helen Perkin, a pianist and composer, to whom he dedicated both the Piano Concerto in E-flat major and the Legend for piano and orchestra.
She gave the premiere performance of both works, but any thoughts he had for a deeper relationship with her came to nothing when she married George Mountford Adie, a disciple of George Gurdjieff, she moved with Adie to Australia. Subsequently, Ireland withdrew the dedications. In 1947 Ireland acquired a personal assistant and companion, Mrs Norah Kirkby, who remained with him till his death. Despite these associations with women, it is clear from his private papers that his sexual proclivities lay elsewhere and many commentators support this view. On 10 September 1949, his 70th birthday was celebrated in a special Prom concert, at which his Piano Concerto was played by Eileen Joyce, the first pianist to record the concerto, in 1942. Ireland retired in 1953, settling in the hamlet of Rock in Sussex, where he lived in a converted windmill for the rest of his life, it was there he met the young pianist Alan Rowlands who would be Ireland's choice to record his complete piano music. In 1959 he declined the award of Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
He died of heart failure aged 82 at Rock Mill in Washington, is buried at St. Mary the Virgin in Shipley, near his home, his epitaph reads "Many waters cannot quench love" and "One of God's noblest works lies here." From Stanford, Ireland inherited a thorough knowledge of the music of Beethoven and other German classical composers, but as a young man he was strongly influenced by Debussy and Ravel as well as by the earlier works of Stravinsky and Bartók. From these influences, he developed his own brand of "English Impressionism", related more to French and Russian models than to the folk-song style prevailing in English music. Like most other Impressionist composers, Ireland favoured small forms and wrote neither symphonies nor operas, although his Piano Concerto is considered among his best works, his output includes some chamber music and a substantial body of piano works, including his best-known piece The Holy Boy, known in numerous arrangements. His songs to poems by A. E. Hous
A music genre is a conventional category that identifies some pieces of music as belonging to a shared tradition or set of conventions. It is to be distinguished from musical form and musical style, although in practice these terms are sometimes used interchangeably. Academics have argued that categorizing music by genre is inaccurate and outdated. Music can be divided into different genres in many different ways; the artistic nature of music means that these classifications are subjective and controversial, some genres may overlap. There are varying academic definitions of the term genre itself. In his book Form in Tonal Music, Douglass M. Green distinguishes between form, he lists madrigal, canzona and dance as examples of genres from the Renaissance period. To further clarify the meaning of genre, Green writes, "Beethoven's Op. 61 and Mendelssohn's Op. 64 are identical in genre – both are violin concertos – but different in form. However, Mozart's Rondo for Piano, K. 511, the Agnus Dei from his Mass, K. 317 are quite different in genre but happen to be similar in form."
Some, like Peter van der Merwe, treat the terms genre and style as the same, saying that genre should be defined as pieces of music that share a certain style or "basic musical language." Others, such as Allan F. Moore, state that genre and style are two separate terms, that secondary characteristics such as subject matter can differentiate between genres. A music genre or subgenre may be defined by the musical techniques, the style, the cultural context, the content and spirit of the themes. Geographical origin is sometimes used to identify a music genre, though a single geographical category will include a wide variety of subgenres. Timothy Laurie argues that since the early 1980s, "genre has graduated from being a subset of popular music studies to being an ubiquitous framework for constituting and evaluating musical research objects". Among the criteria used to classify musical genres are the trichotomy of art and traditional musics. Alternatively, music can be divided on three variables: arousal and depth.
Arousal reflects the energy level of the music. These three variables help explain why many people like similar songs from different traditionally segregated genres. Musicologists have sometimes classified music according to a trichotomic distinction such as Philip Tagg's "axiomatic triangle consisting of'folk','art' and'popular' musics", he explains that each of these three is distinguishable from the others according to certain criteria. The term art music refers to classical traditions, including both contemporary and historical classical music forms. Art music exists in many parts of the world, it emphasizes formal styles that invite technical and detailed deconstruction and criticism, demand focused attention from the listener. In Western practice, art music is considered a written musical tradition, preserved in some form of music notation rather than being transmitted orally, by rote, or in recordings, as popular and traditional music are. Most western art music has been written down using the standard forms of music notation that evolved in Europe, beginning well before the Renaissance and reaching its maturity in the Romantic period.
The identity of a "work" or "piece" of art music is defined by the notated version rather than by a particular performance, is associated with the composer rather than the performer. This is so in the case of western classical music. Art music may include certain forms of jazz, though some feel that jazz is a form of popular music. Sacred Christian music forms an important part of the classical music tradition and repertoire, but can be considered to have an identity of its own; the term popular music refers to any musical style accessible to the general public and disseminated by the mass media. Musicologist and popular music specialist Philip Tagg defined the notion in the light of sociocultural and economical aspects: Popular music, unlike art music, is conceived for mass distribution to large and socioculturally heterogeneous groups of listeners and distributed in non-written form, only possible in an industrial monetary economy where it becomes a commodity and in capitalist societies, subject to the laws of'free' enterprise... it should ideally sell as much as possible.
Popular music is found on most commercial and public service radio stations, in most commercial music retailers and department stores, in movie and television soundtracks. It is noted on the Billboard charts and, in addition to singer-songwriters and composers, it involves music producers more than other genres do; the distinction between classical and popular music has sometimes been blurred in marginal areas such as minimalist music and light classics. Background music for films/movies draws on both traditions. In this respect, music is like fiction, which draws a distinction between literary fiction and popular fiction, not always precise. Country music known as country and western, hillbilly music, is a genre of popular music that originated in the southern United States in the early 1920s; the polka is a Czech dance and genre of dance music familiar throughout Europe and the Americas. Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and particular
A Midsummer Night's Dream
A Midsummer Night's Dream is a comedy written by William Shakespeare in 1595/96. It portrays the events surrounding the marriage of the Duke of Athens, to Hippolyta; these include the adventures of four young Athenian lovers and a group of six amateur actors who are controlled and manipulated by the fairies who inhabit the forest in which most of the play is set. The play is one of Shakespeare's most popular works for the stage and is performed across the world; the play consists of four interconnecting plots, connected by a celebration of the wedding of Duke Theseus of Athens and the Amazon queen, which are set in the woodland and in the realm of Fairyland, under the light of the moon. The play opens with Hermia, in love with Lysander, resistant to her father Egeus's demand that she wed Demetrius, whom he has arranged for her to marry. Helena, Hermia's best friend, pines unrequitedly for Demetrius, who broke up with her to be with Hermia. Enraged, Egeus invokes an ancient Athenian law before Duke Theseus, whereby a daughter needs to marry a suitor chosen by her father, or else face death.
Theseus offers her another choice: lifelong chastity as a nun worshipping the goddess Artemis. Peter Quince and his fellow players Nick Bottom, Francis Flute, Robin Starveling, Tom Snout and Snug plan to put on a play for the wedding of the Duke and the Queen, "the most lamentable comedy and most cruel death of Pyramus and Thisbe". Quince bestows them on the players. Nick Bottom, playing the main role of Pyramus, is over-enthusiastic and wants to dominate others by suggesting himself for the characters of Thisbe, the Lion, Pyramus at the same time, he would rather be a tyrant and recites some lines of Ercles. Bottom is told by Quince that he would do the Lion so as to frighten the duchess and ladies enough for the Duke and Lords to have the players hanged. Snug remarks that he needs the Lion's part because he is "slow of study". Quince ends the meeting with "at the Duke's oak we meet". In a parallel plot line, king of the fairies, Titania, his queen, have come to the forest outside Athens. Titania tells Oberon that she plans to stay there until she has attended Theseus and Hippolyta's wedding.
Oberon and Titania are estranged because Titania refuses to give her Indian changeling to Oberon for use as his "knight" or "henchman", since the child's mother was one of Titania's worshippers. Oberon seeks to punish Titania's disobedience, he calls upon Robin "Puck" Goodfellow, his "shrewd and knavish sprite", to help him concoct a magical juice derived from a flower called "love-in-idleness", which turns from white to purple when struck by Cupid's arrow. When the concoction is applied to the eyelids of a sleeping person, that person, upon waking, falls in love with the first living thing they perceive, he instructs Puck to retrieve the flower with the hope that he might make Titania fall in love with an animal of the forest and thereby shame her into giving up the little Indian boy. He says, "And ere I take this charm from off her sight,/As I can take it with another herb,/I'll make her render up her page to me." Hermia and Lysander have escaped to a forest in hopes of running away from Theseus.
Helena, desperate to reclaim Demetrius's love, tells Demetrius about the plan and he follows them in hopes of finding Hermia. Helena continually makes advances towards Demetrius, promising to love him more than Hermia. However, he rebuffs her with cruel insults against her. Observing this, Oberon orders Puck to spread some of the magical juice from the flower on the eyelids of the young Athenian man. Instead, Puck mistakes Lysander for Demetrius, not having seen either before, administers the juice to the sleeping Lysander. Helena, coming across him, wakes him while attempting to determine whether he is asleep. Upon this happening, Lysander falls in love with Helena. Helena, runs away with Lysander following her; when Hermia wakes up, she sees that Lysander goes out in the woods to find him. Oberon sees Demetrius still following Hermia, who thinks Demetrius killed Lysander, is enraged; when Demetrius goes to sleep, Oberon sends Puck to get Helena. Upon waking up, he sees Helena. Now, both men are in love with Helena.
However, she is convinced that her two suitors are mocking her. Hermia finds Lysander and asks why he left her, but Lysander claims and denies he never loved Hermia, but Helena. Hermia accuses Helena of stealing Lysander away from her while Helena believes Hermia joined the two men in mocking her. Hermia tries to attack Helena. Lysander, tired of Hermia's presence, tells her to leave. Lysander and Demetrius decide to seek a place to duel to prove; the two girls go their own separate ways, Helena hoping to reach Athens and Hermia chasing after the men to make sure Lysander doesn't get hurt or killed. Oberon orders Puck to keep Lysander and Demetrius from catching up with one another and to remove the charm from Lysander so Lysander can return to love Hermia, while Demetrius continues to love Helena. Meanwhile and his band of six labourers have arranged to perform their play about Pyramus and Thisbe for Theseus' wedding and venture into the forest, near Titania's bower, for their rehearsal. Bottom is spotted by Puck.
When Bottom returns for his next lines, the other workmen run screaming in terror: They claim that they are haunted, much to Bot
A jester, court jester, or fool, was an entertainer during the medieval and Renaissance eras, a member of the household of a nobleman or a monarch employed to entertain him and his guests. A jester was an itinerant performer who entertained common folk at fairs and markets. Jesters are modern-day entertainers who resemble their historical counterparts. Jesters in medieval times are thought to have worn brightly coloured clothes and eccentric hats in a motley pattern and their modern counterparts mimic this costume. Jesters entertained with a wide variety of skills: principal among them were song and storytelling, but many employed acrobatics, telling jokes, magic tricks. Much of the entertainment was performed in a comic style and many jesters made contemporary jokes in word or song about people or events well known to their audiences; the modern use of the English word jester did not come into use until the mid-16th century, during Tudor times. This modern term derives from the older form gestour, or jestour from Anglo-Norman meaning storyteller or minstrel.
Other earlier terms included fol and bourder. These terms described entertainers who differed in their skills and performances but who all shared many similarities in their role as comedic performers for their audiences. Early jesters were popular in Ancient Egypt, entertained Egyptian pharaohs; the ancient Romans had a tradition of called balatrones. Balatrones were paid for their jests, the tables of the wealthy were open to them for the sake of the amusement they afforded. Jesters were popular with the Aztec people in the 14th to 16th centuries. Many royal courts throughout English royal history employed entertainers and most had professional fools, sometimes called licensed fools. Entertainment included music and physical comedy, it has been suggested they performed acrobatics and juggling. Henry VIII of England employed a jester named Will Sommers. During the reigns of Elizabeth I and James I of England, William Shakespeare wrote his plays and performed with his theatre company the Lord Chamberlain's Men.
Clowns and jesters were featured in Shakespeare's plays, the company's expert on jesting was Robert Armin, author of the book Fooled upon Foole. In Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, Feste the jester is described as "wise enough to play the fool". King James VI of Scotland employed a jester called Archibald Armstrong. During his lifetime Armstrong was given great honours at court, he was thrown out of the King's employment when he over-reached and insulted too many influential people. After his disgrace, books telling of his jests were sold in London streets, he held some influence at court still in estates of land in Ireland. Charles employed a jester called Jeffrey Hudson, popular and loyal. Jeffrey Hudson had the title of Royal Dwarf. One of his jests was to be presented hidden in a giant pie. Hudson fought on the Royalist side in the English Civil War. A third jester associated with Charles I was called Muckle John. Scholar David Carlyon has cast doubt on the "daring political jester", calling historical tales "apocryphal", concluding that "popular culture embraces a sentimental image of the clown.
Jesters could give bad news to the King that no one else would dare deliver. In 1340, when the French fleet was destroyed at the Battle of Sluys by the English. Phillippe VI's jester told him the English sailors "don't have the guts to jump into the water like our brave French". After the Restoration, Charles II did not reinstate the tradition of the court jester, but he did patronize the theatre and proto-music hall entertainments favouring the work of Thomas Killigrew. Though Killigrew was not a jester, Samuel Pepys in his famous diary does call Killigrew "The King's fool and jester, with the power to mock and revile the most prominent without penalty"; the last British nobles to keep jesters were the Bowes-Lyons. In the 18th century, jesters had died out except in Russia and Germany. In France and Italy, travelling groups of jesters performed plays featuring stylized characters in a form of theatre called the commedia dell'arte. A version of this passed into British folk tradition in the form of a puppet show and Judy.
In France the tradition of the court jester ended with the French Revolution. In 1968, the Canada Council awarded a $3,500 grant to Joachim Foikis of Vancouver "to revive the ancient and time-honoured tradition of town fool". In the 21st century, the jester is still seen at medieval-style pageants. In 2015, the town of Conwy in North Wales appointed Russel Erwood as the official resident jester of the town and its people, a post, vacant since 1295. Poland's most famous court jester was Stańczyk, whose jokes were related to political matters, who became a historical symbol for Poles. In 2004 English Heritage appointed Nigel Roder as the State Jester for England, the first since Muckle John 355 years previously. However, following an objection by the National Guild of Jesters, English Heritage accepted they were not authorised to grant such a title. Roder was succeeded as "Heritage Jester" by Pete Cooper. In Germany, Till Eulenspiegel is a folkloric hero dating back to medieval times and ruling each year over Fasching or Carnival time, mocking politicians and public figures of power
Masques et bergamasques
Masques et bergamasques, Op. 112, is an orchestral suite by Gabriel Fauré. It was arranged by the composer from incidental music he provided for a theatrical entertainment commissioned for Albert I, Prince of Monaco in 1919; the original score contained eight numbers, including two songs for tenor, a choral passage. These numbers were not included in the published suite. In 1918 Raoul Gunsbourg, manager of the Opéra de Monte-Carlo, invited Fauré to write a short work for the theatre; the impetus came from Fauré's friend and former teacher Camille Saint-Saëns, who suggested to Prince Albert that he should commission Fauré to write a short work for the Monte Carlo theatre. Fauré's opera Pénélope had been premiered there, although he felt Gunsbourg had not appreciated the opera, Fauré accepted the new commission, he was director of the Paris Conservatoire, his official duties limited the time he had for composition. For the proposed "choreographic divertissement" billed as a "comédie lyrique", he reused material from earlier compositions.
Fauré proposed a story based on the poem "Clair de lune" from the collection Fêtes galantes by Paul Verlaine. Fauré had set the poem to music in 1887; the title of the new work was taken from the opening lines of the poem. The librettist of Pénélope, René Fauchois, provided a scenario accordingly. In the early 20th century the commedia dell'arte of the 16th and 17th centuries provided inspiration for a number of musical works, including Schoenberg's melodrama Pierrot lunaire, Puccini's comic opera Gianni Schicchi, Stravinsky's ballet Pulcinella. Fauchois' story has a commedia dell'arte troupe spying on the amorous encounters of aristocrats in its audience; the scenery for the production was based on Watteau's "L'Escarpolette". The Monte Carlo production was such a success that Albert Carré put the work on at the Opéra-Comique in Paris in March 1920, where it was performed more than 100 times over the next thirty years; the Fauré scholar Jean-Michel Nectoux describes it as paradoxical that Fauré's most performed stage work is his least ambitious.
The eight movements of the divertissement were all drawn from earlier works of Fauré: Ouverture Pastorale Madrigal Le Plus doux chemin Menuet Clair de lune Gavotte Pavane The suite drawn from the work has remained one of Fauré's most popular works. It was published by Durand et cie in 1919, it is scored for 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, timpani and strings. The suite, which has a typical playing time of about 14 minutes, consists of four of the purely orchestral movements: OuvertureThe movement is in 2/2 time in F major, marked Allegro molto vivo, with a metronome mark of minim = 152, it begins with a swift, light theme marked leggiero, maintains an unflagging tempo throughout, including two passages marked espressivo. After the first performance, Fauré wrote to his wife, "Reynaldo Hahn says that the ouverture sounds like Mozart imitating Fauré – an amusing idea." The typical playing time of the overture is about 3½ minutes. MenuetThe second movement, in 3/4 time in F major, is marked Tempo di minuetto Allegro moderato, with a metronome mark of crotchet = 108.
There are no dynamic extremes in the movement: the quietest marking is piano and the loudest, forte. Nectoux comments that the movement verges on pastiche, remarks that its most characterful phrase is taken note for note from Fauré's 1910 Preludes for Piano, Op. 103. The menuet has a typical playing time of little under 3 minutes. GavotteThe third movement is in D minor, it is marked Allegro vivo. A middle section is marked by a switch to D major, before the movement resumes the first theme in D minor. Like the ouverture, the gavotte is taken from one of Fauré's earliest compositions. Nectoux refers to a piano version from 1869, an orchestral version the same as in Masques et bergamasques in the Suite d'orchestre, Op. 20. The typical playing time of the gavotte is a little over 3 minutes. PastoraleThe suite ends with a movement in D major, in 6/4 time, marked Andantino tranqillo, at dotted minim = 46; the Pastorale is the only part of the suite specially written for the 1919 divertissement. Nectoux rates it as "vintage Faure", citing "consecutive block harmonics, wide melodic leaps … the juxtaposition of melodic segments to form the exposition and the ease with which the developments unfold".
In his view, the sweetness of the movement is tempered by expressive harmonic clashes such as D sharp against E natural, C sharp against D natural. As the movement nears its conclusion, Fauré brings back the opening theme of the ouverture as a countermelody; the movement ends but in Nectoux's view the composer was right to move the Pastorale from its place near the beginning of the divertissement to be the last movement of the suite: "without doubt the crowning glory of Masques et bergamasques", Fauré's "final farewell to the orchestra". The Pastorale is the longest of the four movements in the suite, with a typical playing time of about 4 minutes. Duchen, Jessica. Gabriel Fauré. London: Phaidon. ISBN 978-0-7148-3932-5. Fauré, Gabriel. Masques et Bergamasques. Suite d'orchestre. Paris: A. Durand et fils. OCLC 844205321. Jones, J. Barrie. Gabriel Fauré – A Life in Letters. London: B T Batsford. ISBN 978-0-7134-5468-0. Nectoux, Jean-Michel. Gabriel Fauré – A Musical Life. Roger Nichols. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
For the Croatian sword dance, see Moreška. Moresca, morisca, or moresque, mauresque known in French as the danse des bouffons, is a 15th/16th century pantomime dance in which the executants wore Moorish costumes. One such is the concluding music of Monteverdi's L'Orfeo. One of the best examples of the moresca can be seen in Franco Zeffirelli's 1968 production of Romeo and Juliet, which has a scene with moresca characters and lavish, florid portrayal of the dance in the Capulet home. In the 15th century, the moresca is the most-often mentioned dance type in literature. On the rare occasions other dances are mentioned, the moresca is invariably described as well. In its early manifestation it appears in two forms: as a solo dance, as a couple or group dance in which the dancers mime a sword combat between Christians and Muslims; the moresca continues to be danced in Spain and Guatemala, the name as well as certain characteristics of the choreography are related to the English Morris dance. The term moresca is used for an unrelated carnivalesque form of villanella, a popular song form found in Italy c.1550–1600.
It receives its name from the texts, which parody the speech of Moors, defined as Muslims or more narrowly as inhabitants of the Barbary Coast. Weapon dance Italian folk dance Matachines Arnold and Percy A. Scholes. 1983. New Oxford Companion to Music. P1201. Brown and Donna G. Cardamone. 2001. "Moresca ". The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, second edition, edited by Stanley Sadie and John Tyrrell. London: Macmillan Publishers. Halfyard, Janet. 2002. "Moresca, moresque". The Oxford Companion to Music, edited by Alison Latham. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-866212-9. Sachs, Curt. 1937. World History of the Dance, translated by Bessie Schönberg. New York: W. W. Norton & Co. Inc