News Column

Various Pavans and Fantasies from the Age of Dowland Holloway, Baer, Steinmann, Hefti, Zeller (ECM)

May 18, 2014

As early music moves away from its obsession with authenticity, so programming and performance become freer. John Dowland's famous Lachrimae Pavans are usually heard on viol consort, but the composer also specified violins, and John Holloway's group, playing with glassy tone but also intense expressiveness, capture the heartache at the core of this great music. As if to lighten the burden of grief, the pavans are interleaved with more upbeat pieces, from William Lawes and John Jenkins to Purcell's Fantasy Upon One Note, showing the serene world of the viol being eclipsed by the newfangled violin family, which would soon triumph in the orchestra. Nicholas Kenyon

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Source: Observer (UK)

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