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N. Duda

Music stage works by Henry Purcell in the light of the song genre

The article deals with the individual characteristics of a creative method by Purcell in the genre of theatre songs. The characteristic of the solo vocal pieces in the dramatic plays of the Restoration is given. The author focuses on the variety of genres of stage songs, describes the role of the singers in dramatic performances, as well as the features of the performing of the solos. To demonstrate the variability of the genre of the song in a historical perspective the author gives a description of the traditional for the English court life masque genre in which the song is available in two main varieties, and carries a certain dramatic pageant load. The article addresses the issue of the continuity and development of the dramatic methods in the usage of the song in the musical-theatrical music by Henry Purcell. The songs from the operamasque «Fairy Queen» and the opera «Dido and Aeneas» are the basic material for the analysis. Songs are analyzed in terms of their dramatic function in the opera and semi-opera. The author writes about the expressive possibilities of the songs joined by one sphere and shaped in the separate masks, and the impact of the latter on the formation of a common line of dramatic development. The examples of Italian melodic continuity and influence of English folklore in songs by Purcell are given.

Key words

theatrical song, musical-theatrical works, musical drama of the Restoration, masque genre in the XVIIth-century England, opera masque «Fairy Queen», «Dido and Aeneas».