Dido and Aeneas

More info on Dido and Aeneas


Henry Purcell


Nahum Tate


spring 1689, London-Chelsea (Josias Priest's s




Dido and Aeneas Synopsis


Dido and Aeneas Libretto



About the opera Dido and Aeneas

Dido and Aeneas (Z. 626) is an opera in a prologue and three acts by the English Baroque composer Henry Purcell to a libretto by Nahum Tate. The first known performance was at Josias Priest's girls' school in London no later than the summer of 1688. The story is based on Book IV of Virgil's Aeneid. It recounts the love story of Dido, Queen of Carthage and the Trojan hero Aeneas, and her despair at his abandonment of her. A monumental work in Baroque opera, it is remembered as one of Purcell's foremost theatrical works. Dido and Aeneas was Purcell's first opera, as well as his only all-sung dramatic work. It is among the earliest English operas, and owes much to John Blow's Venus and Adonis, both in structure and overall effect.
Prior to Dido and Aeneas, Purcell had composed music for several stage works including nine pieces for Nathaniel Lee's Theodosius, or The Force of Love (1680) and eight songs for Thomas d'Urfey's A Fool's Preferment (1688). He also composed songs for two plays by Nahum Tate (who was to become the librettist of Dido and Aeneas), The Sicilian Usurper (1680) and Cuckold-Haven (1685). Dido and Aeneas was Purcell's first (and only) all-sung opera and derives from the English masque tradition.
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Roles in Dido and Aeneas

Dido Mezzo-Soprano or Soprano
Belinda Soprano
Second Woman Mezzo-Soprano or Soprano
Aeneas Tenor or Baritone
Sorceress Mezzo-Soprano
First Witch Mezzo-Soprano
Second Witch Mezzo-Soprano
Spirit Soprano or CounterTenor

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External links for Dido and Aeneas

MP3's for this opera on amazone Amazon.com
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DVD's for this opera on amazone Amazon.com
Sheetmusic for this opera on sheetmusicplus Sheetmusicplus.com
Sheetmusic for this opera on imslp IMSLP.org
Movies for this opera on youtube Youtube.com

All scenes from Dido and Aeneas

Arias from Dido and Aeneas
Duets from Dido and Aeneas

Nr.Title sceneOperaComposerActTypeVoicesLang.Roles
1OvertureDido and AeneasPurcell1.01instrumentaln/aEnglishn/a
2Shake the cloud from off your browDido and AeneasPurcell1.02ariasopranoEnglishBelinda
3Ah! Belinda I am prestDido and AeneasPurcell1.03ariamezzo or sopranoEnglishDido
4Grief increases by concealingDido and AeneasPurcell1.04duetS Mz/SEnglishBelinda/Dido
5When monarchs uniteDido and AeneasPurcell1.05choirn/aEnglish
6Whence could so much virtue springDido and AeneasPurcell1.06duetMz/S SEnglishDido/Belinda
7Fear no danger to ensueDido and AeneasPurcell1.07-1 aria,choirsopranoEnglishBelinda
8Bask danceDido and AeneasPurcell1.07-2 n/aEnglish
9See our royal guest appearsDido and AeneasPurcell1.08duetS T/BrEnglishBelinda/Aeneas
10Cupid only throws the dartDido and AeneasPurcell1.09choirn/aEnglish
11If not for mine for Empire's sakeDido and AeneasPurcell1.10ariabaritone or tenorEnglishAeneas
12Pursue thy conquest loveDido and AeneasPurcell1.11ariasopranoEnglishBelinda
13To the hills and the valesDido and AeneasPurcell1.12choirn/aEnglish
14The triumphing danceDido and AeneasPurcell1.13instrumentaln/aEnglishn/a
15Wayward sisters you that frightDido and AeneasPurcell2.01ariamezzoEnglishSorceress
16Harm's our delightDido and AeneasPurcell2.02choirn/aEnglish
17The Queen of CarthageDido and AeneasPurcell2.03ariamezzoEnglishSorceress
18Ho ho hoDido and AeneasPurcell2.04choirn/aEnglish
19Ruin'd ere the set of sunDido and AeneasPurcell2.05recitativemezzoEnglishSorceress
20But ere we this performDido and AeneasPurcell2.06duetMz MzEnglishFirst Witch/Second Witch
21In our deep vaulted cellDido and AeneasPurcell2.07choirn/aEnglish
22Echo dance of furiesDido and AeneasPurcell2.08n/aEnglishGhosts
23RitornelleDido and AeneasPurcell2.09instrumentaln/aEnglishn/a
24Thanks to these lonesome valesDido and AeneasPurcell2.10ariasopranoEnglishBelinda
25Oft she visits this loved mountainDido and AeneasPurcell2.11ariamezzo or sopranoEnglishDido
26Behold upon my bending spearDido and AeneasPurcell2.12duetT/Br Mz/SEnglishAeneas/Dido
27Haste haste to townDido and AeneasPurcell2.13ariasopranoEnglishBelinda
28Stay Prince and hearDido and AeneasPurcell2.14duetbaritone or tenorEnglishAeneas/Ghost
29Then since our chorus have spedDido and AeneasPurcell2.15choirn/aEnglish
30Grove's danceDido and AeneasPurcell2.16instrumentaln/aEnglishn/a
31Come away fellow sailorsDido and AeneasPurcell3.01ariatenorEnglishSailer
32Sailer's danceDido and AeneasPurcell3.02instrumentaln/aEnglishn/a
33See see the flagsDido and AeneasPurcell3.03duetMz MzEnglishSorceress/First Witch
34Our next motionDido and AeneasPurcell3.04ariamezzoEnglishSorceress
35Destruction's our delightDido and AeneasPurcell3.05choirn/aEnglish
36Witches danceDido and AeneasPurcell3.06instrumentaln/aEnglishn/a
37But death alas I cannot shunDido and AeneasPurcell3.08-1 aria,choirmezzo or sopranoEnglishDido
38Great minds against themselvesDido and AeneasPurcell3.08-2 choirn/aEnglish
39Thy hand Belinda when I am laidDido and AeneasPurcell3.09ariamezzo or sopranoEnglishDido
40When I am laid in earthDido and AeneasPurcell3.10ariamezzo or sopranoEnglishDido
41With drooping wings Cupids comeDido and AeneasPurcell3.11choirn/aEnglish
42Cupic's danceDido and AeneasPurcell3.12n/aEnglish