From the Library: Music for Shakespeare

John William Water­house­’s paint­ing of Miran­da and The Tem­pest (1916)

Today’s pro­gramme fea­tures music writ­ten to accom­pa­ny Shake­speare’s plays, in par­tic­u­lar Romeo & Juli­et, The Tem­pest and A Mid­sum­mer Night’s Dream by such com­posers as Pur­cell, Prokofiev, Sibelius, Sul­li­van, Wal­ton and, of course, Mendelssohn.

In addi­tion we’ll hear some oth­er pieces in a Shake­spear­i­an vein, such as set­tings of some of the Son­nets, and some con­tem­po­rary quo­ta­tions from the­atre-goers. These lat­ter, along with some Eliz­a­bethan inci­den­tal music for some of the plays, come from the won­der­ful albums released by Shake­speare’s Globe, the mar­vel­lous recre­ation of the Globe The­atre on Lon­don’s South Bank, where you can expe­ri­ence Shake­speare in as close to the orig­i­nal the­atri­cal envi­ron­ment as is pos­si­ble today. For more details on Shake­speare’s Globe, please vis­it their web site.

The musi­cal gen­res rep­re­sent­ed today are quite exten­sive, from Ear­ly Music, through orches­tral clas­si­cal set­tings, to the rel­a­tive­ly mod­ern inter­pre­ta­tions of The Third Ear Band’s music for Polan­ski’s Mac­beth and Prin­ci­pal Edwards’ Mag­ic The­atre. All this will make for a var­ied pro­gramme.

Then join us at 6pm Pacif­ic for Mon­days at Mad­hu’s: a pro­gramme of world music pre­sent­ed week­ly by Carter Den­ja live from Mad­hu’s Café. This week it’s Inter­na­tion­al Jazz – more details here.

Today’s pro­gramme is pre­sent­ed by Elrik Mer­lin and pro­duced by Radio Riel in asso­ci­a­tion with the Alexan­dri­an Free Library Con­sor­tium of Sec­ond Life. You can lis­ten now at

For more infor­ma­tion on the Alexan­dri­an Free Library, cur­rent exhibits and the work of Con­sor­tium mem­bers in gen­er­al, please vis­it the Alexan­dri­an Free Library web­site, or one of their branch­es in-world.

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