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Stucky, "Funeral Music for Queen Mary (After Purcell)"

Funeral Music for Queen Mary (after Purcell)

Steven Stucky

Born: 1948, Abilene, Texas

Composed: 1991

Duration: 10 minutes

Stucky wrote Funeral Music for Queen Mary (after Henry Purcell) in 1991 for Los Angeles Philharmonic, who premiered the work on Feb. 6, 1992, in Los Angeles.

Stucky offers the following regarding his composition:

“It was at the suggestion of Esa-Pekka Salonen that I transcribed this music of Purcell for Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra. I used three of the pieces heard at the funeral of Mary II of England, who died of smallpox on 28 Dec. 1694: a solemn march, the anthem “In the Midst of Life We Are in Death,” and a canzona in imitative polyphonic style. In working on the project I did not try to achieve a pure, musicological reconstruction but, on the contrary, to regard Purcell’s music, which I love deeply, through the lens of 300 intervening years. Thus, although most of this version is straightforward orchestration of the Purcell originals, there are moments when Purcell drifts out of focus. My version was first performed in Los Angeles on 6 Feb.1992.”


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