Perpetual Night

with Lucile Richardot


Starting from the universe of Consorts Songs & English Virginalists, while the virtuoso spirit of the Renaissance still stretches on the first years of the seventeenth century, it appeared to us that the world of music that follows Dowland and precedes Blow and Purcell was a world little know, but very fascinating.

The political instability of the Kingdom of England in these first decades (monarchy, execution of Charles I, protectorate of Cromwell, then restoration) and the perpetual tensions between Catholics and Protestants necessarily have repercussions on the artistic life: the musicians evolve depending on which regime, which religion they support, and new genres are emerging and disappearing, new mixtures and new flavors are appearing.

It was during this period that the English accompanied monody was born, where the beauty of counterpoint and its dissonances gave a new place to a freedom of declamation, modeled on Italian Caccini & Monteverdi research. The poetic universe is largely derived from the pastoral, while making a more important part of a real dramatic inspiration. Melancholy remains an omnipresent ingredient and a specific English signature.

In the style of a beautiful anthology, these songs retrace the art of singing in the English way, where France and its delicacy are never far away, where Italian extravagances are envied and imitated. From William Lawes’s grand narratives to the seduction of John Blow’s melodies, it is the whole English sound universe that is shaping before our eyes and which will build over the years the inspiration of the young Henry Purcell.

Perpetual Night has been awarded German Record Crititcs’ Award 2018 and Diapason d’Or de l’année, as well as Choc of the year ClassicaDiamant d’Opéra Magazine and  ffff Télérama.


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