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Giles Swayne

Publisher: Novello & Co

Ophelia drowning (1996)
Text Writer
Shakespeare
Publisher
Novello & Co Ltd
Category
Chorus a cappella / + 1 instrument
Year Composed
1996
Duration
9 Minutes
Chorus
SATB
Language
English
Solo Instrument(s)
Flute
Availability
Buy this work
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Programme Note
Giles Swayne Ophelia drowning (1996)
Ophelia Drowning is scored for solo flute and SATB voices. The flute represents Ophelia; the voices are those of the horrified spectators of her death. Their narrative is heard first in a fragmented, hesitant form; then in a slightly fuller version; and finally in its entirety. The aim was to present Ophelia’s state of mind as she approached death, and to underline this with the shock of those who witnessed it – so that they tell the story three times, gradually plucking up courage to fill in the gaps.

Ophelia Drowning is dedicated to Philippa Davies, who gave the first performance on 14 October 1996 at the Purcell Room, London, with the choir Laudibus, conducted by Michael Brewer.

Programme note © 1996 Giles Swayne


  • Ensemble
    BBC Singers
    Soloist(s)
    David Goode / Philippa Davies
    Conductor
    Stephen Cleobury
    Classics:
Performances
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