Love in the Pleasure Gardens


Wednesday 23 February 2011, 7pm, the Guildhall

Love in the Pleasure Gardens Lady Georgianna's newest programme,

includes five sets, on the topics of 'The rise of the pleasure garden', 'The magic of the gardens', 'The betraying swain', 'Italian castrati and opera singers', and 'The close of the season'.

Lovers court against the backdrop of the famed pleasure gardens which ran from the time of Samuel Pepys through their heyday in the late 18th Century through to the Victorian era (where illuminations, fireworks, acrobatics, and balloons were common). There is a metaphor here with the close of the actual gardens in their twilight years. Some known pieces like Purcell's 'Sweeter than Roses' and 'Man is for the woman made',
plus composers well known for their association with the theatres and the pleasure gardens (Arne, Stanley, Boyce, Dibbin and Giardini) and then an array of lesser knowns and anons. Through the music we have a description of the fabulous gardens, their use in courtship, the sense of awe and mystery, and the excitement of the most famous opera singers of the day. Hear this programme in the making, before it goes on UK tour.

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