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Handel As Orpheus: Voice and Desire in the Chamber Cantatas

Handel As Orpheus: Voice and Desire in the Chamber Cantatas

This video was recorded at Authors@MIT. MIT Professor of Music Ellen Harris discusses Handel's chamber cantatas written from 1706-23, from a social point of view, exposing the exclusive and secret homosexual society in which they were created. The compositions were written when Handel lived in the homes of aristocratic patrons, first in Italy and then in Germany and England. Harris concentrates on the texts, including for the first time complete translations of all sixty seven cantatas, and discusses them in terms of their classical meanings, social context, and secret codes and private references.

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