A celebration of Shakespeare’s birthday with a program of songs and narrations from his plays and incidental music by his contemporaries.
Music plays a significant role in Shakespeare's works. More than a 100 songs and numerous instrumental cues are found in his theatre, which funtion as powerful tools to create different atmospheres, convey feelings, enhance emotions, induce sleep, falling in love or miraculous healings. PHOENIX - in its initial formation as a consort of viols - brings to life some of the Bard's most expressive texts associated with music and some of the most beautiful music he chose to be heard at his plays.
This is the LIVE RECORDING of the ensemble's debut on 24.04.1999, as a consort of viols: “A red-letter day for Israel's musical life... The chosen songs, texts and instrumental pieces from the plays were a collection of real gems. The Renaissance instruments’ clarity and balance were immensely enjoyable, lively and fresh. Soprano Miriam Meltzer excelling as a charming, utterly convincing Macbethian witch, Benny Hendel capturing the various accents and impersonations to perfection... The Consort will have to work hard to live up to the standard it has established in its debut”. The Jerusalem Post
Ensemble PHOENIX - Myrna Herzog musical director
Miriam Meltzer - soprano, Benny Hendel - narrator, Myrna Herzog – treble & bass viols, Joseph Sharon - tenor viol, Na’ama Yacoby - bass viol, Tal Arbel - bass viol & recorder, David Shemer - virginals, Itay Rachmilevitch – lute, David Feldman - percussion
01 Anthony Holborne (d.1602) - The Night Watch & Twelfth Night, Orsino
02 Twelfth Night, Sir Toby
03 Anon. - Kemp's Jig
04 Hamlet, the King and Ophelia
05 Anon. - Tomorrow is St. Valentine's day
06 Anon. - How should I true love know
07 Anon. - Bonny sweet Robin
08 Romeo and Juliet, Peter and musicians
09 Holborne - Heart's Ease
10 Romeo and Juliet, Romeo
11 John Dowland (1562 - 1626) - In darkness let me dwell
12 Macbeth, Hecate
13 Anon. - Come away, Hecate
14 Macbeth, First Witch
15 Anon. - The Witches dance
16 The Tempest, Ferdinand, son to the King of Naples
17 Robert Johnson (1583-1633) - Full fathom five
18 Richard II, John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster
19 John Taverner (c. 1490 - 1545) - In Nomine
20 The Merry Wives of Windsor, Sir Falstaff
21 Anon. - Fortune my foe
22 The Merry Wives of Windsor, Sir Falstaff
23 Anon. – Green Sleeves
24 Henry V - Louis, the Dauphin and the Duke of Bourbon
25 William Byrd (1543 - 1623) - La Volta
26 Henry IV, Owen Glendower
27 Dowland - Come heavy sleep
28 A Midsummer’s Night Dream, Titania, Queen of the Fairies
29 Anon. - Sellenger's round
30 Much Ado about Nothing, Hero, Beatrice and Margaret
31 Anon. - The Sick Tune
32 Anon., arr. Michel Praetorius (1571-1621) - Light O'Love
33 As you Like it, the clown Touchstone and two pages
34 Thomas Morley (1557-1602) - It was a lover and his lasse
35 The Merchant of Venice, Lorenzo
36 Holborne – Pavan
37 Bonus track Myrna Herzog's speech at the end of the ensemble's debut as a viol consort, on April 24 1999, Raanana, Israel
LIVE RECORDING, April 24, 1999, Beit Yad Labanim, Ra’anana, Israel.
Recording Engineer: Eliahu Feldman. Editing: Myrna Herzog& David Feldman.
Mastering: David Feldman
Graphic Design: Myrna Herzog.
Cover: The 1603 anonymous Sanders portrait of William Shakespeare, now considered the only true likeness of Shakespeare painted in his lifetime.
“ a well-researched and impressive debut" (Clifford Bartlett, Early Music Review)
“Last week’s debut of the Israel Consort of Viols [Yad Labanim, Ra’anana, April 24th, 1999] – the first of its kind in this country – was a red-letter day for Israel’s musical life. The chosen songs, texts and the instrumental pieces from the plays were a collection of real gems. The Renaissance period instruments’ intimate and delicate sound recreated a aristocratic salon ambience, their clarity and balance were immensely enjoyable, lively and fresh. Soprano Miriam Meltzer excelling as a charming, utterly convincing Macbethian witch, Benny Hendel capturing the various accents and impersonations to perfection... The Consort will have to work hard to live up to the standard it has established in its debut”. Ury Eppstein, The Jerusalem Post