Measure for Measure

The “Bard of Avon,” William Shakespeare (ca. 1564–1616), has made arguably the greatest contribution to English literature of any single person in history. It is no surprise then that many composers have set his texts to music: from Sergei Prokofiev’s ballet adaptation of “Romeo and Juliet” to Verdi’s opera “Otello” to Duke Ellington’s song cycle “Such Sweet Thunder.”

For this concert, the Shoalhaven Lydian Singers have made a selection of choral works from various composers who have used the words of Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets for the text of their compositions. The program will include pieces such as You Spotted Snakes by Felix Mendelssohn, Blow, Blow Thou Winter Wind by John Rutter, If Music Be the Food of Love by Henry Purcell, Double, Double Toil and Trouble by Jaako Mantyjarvi, plus a jazz setting by George Shearing of Six Songs and Sonnets by William Shakespeare.