Review


Henry Purcell
Aria and Chorus from Dido and Aeneas:

Arranged by Erich Schwarz

3 tenor, 1 bass trombone

Orlando, FL, United States
Publisher: Wehr's Music House
Date of Publication: 2020
URL: http://www.wehrs-music-house.com

Score and parts.

Genre: TROMBONE ENSEMBLES

This is an arrangement of two excerpts from one the greatest operas of the Baroque period. The first is a ground bass aria for soprano and string orchestra. This is one of the most emotional arias in all of opera as Dido, after having been abandoned by her love Aeneas, contemplates suicide. In this arrangement the bass trombone gets to play the same six measure ground bass line eleven times. Trombones two and three supply the harmonies, while the first part gets a version of the soprano solo.

The second excerpt is the concluding chorus of the opera which amplifies and comments on the tragedy that has occurred: With drooping wings, you Cupids come, and scatter roses on her tomb. Soft and gentle as her heart. Keep here your watch, and never part. In this chorus an arranger has to be careful when writing for the limited ranges of trombones vs an SATB chorus, that the texture does not become muddy. This arrangement does not pose technical challenges and will work well for both trombone quartet or choir. Print and paper quality are fine.

Reviewer: Karl Hinterbichler
Review Published January 27, 2021