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William Cornysh

The Eton Choirbook, compiled for liturgical use at Eton University around 1500, offers a unique view of British music in the turn from the sixteenth century; simply no other similar repertoire resource for this period offers survived the depredations from the British Reformation. Among the 25 choice composers displayed stands the name of William Cornysh, adding eight pieces to the nationwide anthology of devotional music. He also made up 13 from the secular component songs inside a 1520 anthology of music referred to as Henry VIII’s Songbook, following its collector and primary contributor. Obviously Cornysh kept the respect of Ruler and Church as well; hardly any straightforward information regarding his life, nevertheless, survives. Actually, recent scholarship shows that both of these repertoires could be the task of two independent people: William Cornysh the elder, author of the mature Eton Choirbook chapel music, and William Cornysh younger (probably his child), actor, vocalist, and courtier. A small amount of early paperwork list obligations to a William Cornysh for compositions, as well as for involvement in courtly dramas and “disguysings,” the initial dating from 1494. He spent amount of time in jail beginning in 1502, creating a pamphlet of versified defenses while incarcerated. Evidently his term was short, as his 1501 session being a Gentleman from the Chapel Royal was hardly ever revoked, and he was appointed Get good at of the kids for the Chapel establishment in 1509, a posture he kept until his loss of life in 1523. Information of courtroom dramatic presentations in 1511 and 1514 credit him with musical cooperation, and his existence leading the royal performers across the Route in 1513 and once again at 1520 through the celebrations in the field from the Material of Gold is certainly well-documented. As past due as June 1522, the courtroom received a play of his, celebrating the diplomatic go to with the Holy Roman Emperor. The making it through sacred music of “Cornysh” in the Eton Choirbook stocks with a lot of that repertory a dense, melismatic structure, a commendable breadth of vocal range, and a penchant for biting cross-relations and various other dissonances. His marvelous and popular setting up from the Marian text message “Salve regina” out of this supply exemplifies the design. Indeed, his efforts to this quantity bespeak a astonishing maturity of hands. In his period, nevertheless, William Cornysh Jr. (presuming that both repertoires are his) appears to have been greater known for his secular function, as a tune composer, professional, playwright, and stage movie director, and one at the guts from the Tudor court’s secular lifestyle. A melody of his from Henry VIII’s Songbook, A robyn, soft robyn, might have been the melody Shakespeare designed the clown to sing in the 4th action of Twelfth Evening.

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