celebrating three hundred years of music by women
Maria Walpurgis (1724-1780)|
Maria Walpurgis was a German aristocrat-musician, with much influence over the musical life of 18th century courts. She was Electress of Saxony by marriage, and learned music both in Munich where she was born and in Dresden. Her heyday was the mid-century period before the Seven Years' War when she painted, wrote poetry, sang in her own operas and acted as patron to other artists, among them her own composition teacher Johann Hasse.
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Talestri, Queen of the Amazons had its premiere in 1760 with the composer prominent in the cast. It was published at the time, and reached the stage in other cities.
Overture: 1. Allegro. 2. Andantino. 3. Allegro
2 ob, 2 hn, strings. 10 mins
The Overture consist of three miniature symphonic movements, which are vigourous and concise. Hints of a large-scale scheme after the opening flourish soon disappear as the music sweeps precipitately into the next key; the middle part of the movement is equally telescoped. The Andantino relaxes more with a subtle, expressive second theme, and the Finale dances along in energetic fashion. The music was much appreciated when my orchestra, the Ambache, gave the UK première in 1995.
ClarNan Editions publish Three Arias (for soprano and orchestra) from Talestri.