Friday, 11 November 2011

Dr Dee

Checking out Damon Albarn's new English Opera and getting acquainted with John Dee

The sixteenth century in England (and Europe in general) was an amazing time in modern history. It is regarded by historians as the century in which the rise of the West occurred.
With the likes of the Protestant Reformation, the Spanish Armada, circumnavigation of the globe. Important characters of history appear everywhere, there names instantly recognizable Henry V111, Elizabeth 1, Sir Francis Drake, William Shakespeare, Sir Walter Raliegh add these names to others from Europe
Copernicus, Machiavelli, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci , Nostradamus, Christopher Columbus, Martin Luther, you get a feeling that modern civilisation began in 16th Century.
One name that keeps popping up recently is the name of John Dee.
A former confidant of Elizabeth 1 and inspiration for characters for the plays of Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe, he led an amazing life as a scholar, mathematician, occultist and alchemist.
He is recently the subject of a modern opera by Damon Albarn on the recommendation of Alan Moore.
I highly recommend you look him via the list of links below.
Also linked are a collection of songs from the opera as well as several interviews with Albarn.
Very Interesting reading and viewing.

This is a 48 minute doco from the Hallmark channel which is a bit dramatic but still very interesting. It concentrates a bit too much on the occult side.
It also features Alan Moore.

John Dee Wikipedia article

John Dee Society

Download 10 songs from the opera and a rather interesting interview with Albarn

No comments: