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The National Chamber Choir of Ireland

category national | arts and media | news report author Monday July 15, 2013 16:08author by Sean Crudden - imperoauthor email sean at impero dot iol dot ieauthor address Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co Louthauthor phone 0879739945 Report this post to the editors

A Summer Baroque Festival

The festival involved also Theatre of Voices, Denmark. Four separate different programs were performed, one each on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. In The Pepper Canister Church. I drove from Boyle yesterday and was lucky enough to catch the performance of Purcell's Dido and Aeneas which started at 14.30 on a sultry sunny Sunday afternoon. This was an inaugural festival, a new departure for the National Chamber Choir.

Dido & Aeneas

Sunday 14 July 2013, 2.30 p.m.
An opera in three acts
Music by Henry Purcell
Libretto by Nathum Tate

Soloists:

Dido. Kristin Mulders
Aeneas. Jacob Block Jesperson
Belinda. Else Torp
Second Woman. Sarah Busfield
Sorceress. Mark Chambers
First Witch. Laura Lamph
Sailor. Warwick Harte

A small orchestra including 2 violins, a double bass, a cello, a harpsichord; and a "machine" to create the effect of thunder and wind.

Conductor: Paul Hillier

The singing suited the precincts of the church and no-one pushed it except Mark Chambers who did so with the utmost success. Kristin Mulders in red was a super Dido with marvellous presence and a fine well-schooled voice. Jacob Block Jesperson has a remarkably fine appearance and carriage. His singing was unforced and his characterisation had a rather appropriate touch of slime. The staging was simple, clever and worked a treat. A singer in the chorus who caught my eye was Elizabeth Hilliard. She really got in to the spirit of things with enthusiasm. And the audience was totally enthusiastic giving a prolonged standing ovation at the end clapping industriously.

A quote, taken from the excellent program from which I also culled the details above.

Dido

"Thus on the fatal banks of Nile
Weeps the deceitful Crocodile.
Thus Hypocrites that Murder act,
Make Heaven and Gods the authors of the fact."

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