Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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John Blow (1649-1708)

Mon May 20 2019

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John Blow/ The Man

Famous for teaching Purcell, being James II’s private musician and for landing his very first job as organist at Westminster Abbey, John Blow was born into humble origins in Nottingham in 1649. He was known for his sharp temper, handsome features and decency of character.

John Blow/ The Music

His musical output contains much sacred music (music for the church) including over one hundred anthems and fourteen services. His famous masque (a form of courtly entertainment) Venus and Adonis was an instant sensation and his vocal super-hits Ode to St Cecilia’s Day and Mark how the lark and linnet sing (An Ode of the Death of Mr Henry Purcell) are probably more popular today than they were 400 years ago!

He regarded his sacred works as his most important compositions.

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