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John Dowland: Lachrimae or Seven Tears / Laurence Dreyfus, treble viol; Jonathan Manson, Emilia Benjamin & Mikko Perkola, tenor viol; Markku Luolajan, bass viol

Album Summary

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lachrimae, or Seaven Teares, for 5 viols/violins & lute
Performers Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

John Dowland's gifts as an exceptional melodist are evident throughout Lachrimae or Seven Tears, an artistic achievement which has cast a remarkable spell on early music. Summing up the Renaissance preoccupation with melancholy, this extraordinary collection of dance music for viols and lute includes Dowland's 'signature' piece, Semper Dowland semper Dolens. Dowland reveals a personal world of sublime sadness, grief, anger and melancholy mollified by moments of joy and gladness. A skilled lutenist, Dowland's intricately-worked parts demand perfect synchronicity between Phantasm and Elizabeth Kenny, who rise to the technical and tempi challenges of marrying their instruments. The popularity of Dowland's music in his own lifetime continued through the centuries with Lawes, Jenkins and Gibbons all paying homage to Dowland's 'Tears'. Although freed from lyric constraints poetic images linger prompting Phantasm's Laurence Dreyfus to describe this as 'the most sensuously tuneful hour of music ever written'. Phantasm has been widely acclaimed for its previous recordings: its 2015 recording of Lawes was named Limelight's 'Chamber Recording of the Year', its 2011 recording of Byrd was named 'Disc of the Month' by BBC Music, and it won a 2004 Gramophone Award for its recording of Viol Consorts by Gibbons. Critics have described the ensemble and its recordings as 'intoxicating', 'revelatory', 'electrifying' and 'interpretations pervaded by a truly burning spirit'. The award-winning ensemble has been applauded across the globe for its moving performances and is recognized as the most exciting viol consort active on the world scene today. Phantasm's international members (from Britain, Finland and the US) have toured extensively across Europe, North America and East Asia.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Magdalen College, Oxford, England (07/05/2015-07/07/2015).


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Works Details

>Dowland, John [Composer] : Lachrimae, or Seaven Teares, for 5 viols/violins & lute
  • Performers: Emilia Benjamin (Tenor Viola da gamba); Laurence Dreyfus (Treble Vla da gamba); Jonathan Manson [Cello/Viola da gamba] (Tenor Viola da gamba); Markku Luolajan-Mikkola (Bass Viola da gamba); Mikko Perkola (Tenor Viola da gamba)
  • Ensemble: Phantasm (Viol Consort)
  • Notes: Magdalen College, Oxford, England (07/05/2015-07/07/2015)
  • Running Time: 53 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Written: 1604