Viola da Gamba and the Theorbo

IMG_3172 autumn in Mittagong

Autumn in Mittagong.

Last Sunday,  a nice friend invited me to see a concert at a local village hall at Berrima about a 15 minute drive from here. Her daughter is free lance soprano living here in The Southern Highlands with a diploma of Opera from London and a Masters of Music at the Royal Northern College of Music.

The concert played baroque music which according to my limited knowledge of music covers early music between 1600 to the 1850’s or so. Vivaldi’s four seasons and Bach’s piano pieces are included in the more known works.

Here I quote from Google;

“The work that distinguishes the Baroque period is stylistically complex and even contradictory. Currents of naturalism and Classicism, for example, coexisted and intermingled with the typical Baroque style. In general, however, the desire to evoke emotional states by appealing to the senses, often in dramatic ways, underlies its manifestations. Some of the qualities most frequently associated with the Baroque are grandeur, sensuous richness, drama, dynamism, movement, tension, emotional exuberance, and a tendency to blur distinctions between the various arts.”

The instruments  that were used in my concert were the Viola da Gamba which as the name suggests is a type of violin but much larger and instead of being tucked under the chin stands on the ground like a cello.

The Theorbo is an instrument I never heard of. However, that is proof of my ignorance and not that it is not a worthy instrument. It certainly looks dramatic and so is its sound. I loved it in combination of the singers performing pieces especially arranged to be sung and played on those instruments.

Here is an introduction of the Theorbo, for those interested in a music career.

Only a few nights ago I watched Bohemian Rhapsody which is a totally different music and singing oeuvre with Freddy Mercury. It was played by more modern instruments accompanying Freddy. I wonder if his music will last the same as Vivaldi, Bach, Monteverdi, Henry Purcell and so many other?

My friend’s daughter’s singing was sublime and it brought tears to my eyes. Good art does that, doesn’t it?

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15 Responses to “Viola da Gamba and the Theorbo”

  1. catterel Says:

    Sounds like a lovely concert – the Theory video is fascinating. I’m visualising a duet with Theorbo and Alphorn …

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Angela de Groote Says:

    Sounds wonderful. I know my daughter tap dancing brings tears to my eyes. I just love watching people passionate about their passions! So to speak!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. doesitevenmatter3 Says:

    Yes, it does! For sure! Indeed! πŸ™‚
    How wonderful, Gerard! I’m so glad you attended that concert! It sounds heavenly!
    I’ve never heard of the Theorbo…thank you for sharing it with us!
    Oh, your autumn photo is beautiful!
    I hope Mr. Mercury’s music will last through the ages…I go on YouTube and listen to him still. πŸ™‚ He brings me joy. πŸ™‚
    (((HUGS))) πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  4. gerard oosterman Says:

    No, it was the first time I even heard of that Theorbo.
    Years ago, I was the despair of the piano teacher. I am the opposite of having perfect pitch. I am deaf thanks to a gene from my mum. I have three brothers all deaf.
    But wasn’t Beethoven deaf too?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. shoreacres Says:

    I love Baroque music, as well as that of the Renaissance, but I’ve never heard of the Theorbo. It looked vaguely familiar, and I finally realized it was reminding me of the balalaika. I enjoyed the video, and then spent a bit of time browsing through videos from other artists — all in all, a very nice way to spend a few minutes before bed!

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Music is food for the soul. It transports one above the every day events such as shopping or paying bills, watching the petrol bowser at the service station.
      I admire people who can sing or play instruments.


  6. janesmudgeegarden Says:

    We have a friend right here in Mudgee who is actually MAKING a theorbo!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Curt Mekemson Says:

    Sounds like you really enjoyed the experience, Gerard. Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, BTW, has been a favorite of mine for a long. long time. –Curt

    Liked by 1 person

  8. rangewriter Says:

    Oh my gosh! Thank you for this post. As a bit of a Baroque fan, I am aware of some of the Baroque instruments, but I’d never heard of the theorbo. It is lovely both visually and aurally.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. gerard oosterman Says:

    Yes, and hearing that instrument being played was really satisfying.


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