The Elizabethan Era has been described as a Golden Age for England. This is due, in part, to the music which flourished during the period. The court of Elizabeth I was replete with song, dance, and ceremony. It is no surprise then to discover that the queen, herself, could play the lute, the virginals, and dance the galliard.
The Toronto Consort
The Toronto Consort’s new recording of music of Queen Elizabeth I is a welcome addition to the English Renaissance discography. Their performance is finely polished and beautifully presented. The singers in consort deserve high praise for their excellent ensemble sound.
The 2004 Alpha label recording of Elizabethan music by Les Witches is magical. Like the Toronto Consort, Les Witches presents a terrific program of instrumental and vocal pieces, sometimes combining the two with arrangements. One notable feature is the performance of songs by non-native English speakers with prominent accents. One wonders if this might have been something also true in the Elizabethan Age. I suspect so…