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Restoration Music

Music by Purcell, Blow and other great composers from the Restoration period.
London, Kings Place


Zoe Brookshaw soprano

Peter Harvey bass

The second English civil war and the decade of unstable republican government that followed it was a repressive and miserable time for most. Families were torn apart, theatres were closed and music was silenced. When the monarchy was restored, those living in London breathed a sigh of relief and turned to the arts to give them the strength and inspiration to rebuild their way of life.

Through this collection of short and thrilling pieces of music we draw parallels with our experience of restoration after covid-19, and our determination to see the arts flourish once more.

Some of the highlights of the concert include the music of Draghi, who, at the request of King Charles, migrated to London from Italy to compose for the newly opened opera houses and theatres. The concert also features the playful ‘Sing ye Muses’ by Blow, who moved to London during the restoration to be the organist of Westminster Abbey, as well as the dreamy duet ‘You Say ‘Tis Love’ from King Arthur by London native Purcell.

Concert directed by OAE Principal Keyboard Steven Devine with readings from Samuel Pepys’ diary by Clive Myrie.



Symphony: “From Harmony, from Heav’nly Harmony”

“Orpheus could lead the Savage Race” 

Ritornello: “From Harmony, from Heav’nly Harmony” 


HENRY PURCELL (1659 – 1695)

King Arthur: “You Say ‘tis love”

Pavan in B flat

Abdelazar: Overture and Rondeau 

“A Dialogue between Thyrsis and Daphne” 


LOUIS GRABU (fl 1665 – 1694)

A selection from Albion and Albanius


   Air for Mercury’s Followers 

   “Oh Jealousy”  

   Entry of Heroes 


JOHN BLOW (1649 – 1708)

“As on Septimius’ panting breast”

Ground in G minor 

“Sing ye Muses”