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December 2013
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Living Baroque–It’s Edgier Than You Think

Defeat of the Spanish Armada by Philip James de Loutherbourg

Defeat of the Spanish Armada by Philip James de Loutherbourg

Thursdays at 10:00 PM

Queen Elizabeth Knights Pirate

The image of Sir Francis Drake torching 30 Spanish ships, returning to the Queen with gold and jewels from distant lands is a favorite lesson for school kids—if only every day at school could be that exciting.

History is written by the victors.

—Winston Churchill

The loser in that struggle also has a good story, if lesser known to American schoolchildren; King Philip II came of age in what’s been called Spain’s Golden Age. He married Queen Mary I, Bloody Mary, and reigned over England and Ireland during her short life. He tried to hold onto that piece of real estate, proposing marriage to Elizabeth I. It wasn’t to be, and they eventually went to war.



Philip II offering Fernando to Victory by Titian







Nevertheless, Philip ruled lands in several continents: the Philippines were named for him. His legacy as arts patron is enormous: building El Escorial, the palace and monastery, now an UNESCO World Heritage Site; Philip’s collection included works by Hieronymus Bosch, Benvenuto Cellini and by El Greco—he also commissioned and rejected works by the latter two, relegating their creations to places in his sprawling residences which he never visited.

On Thursday at 10:00 PM  WFMT unveils a new series called Baroque & Before which debuts with music written for the court of Philip II, and continues through three centuries of Spanish keyboard music.

Ignacio Prego

Ignacio Prego


Music for Thursday’s program was recorded live at Instituto Cervantes Chicago last fall at the Latino Music Festival. Ignacio Prego is the featured artist. Music includes the famous Fandango by Antonio Padre Soler, Tientos, Batallas, Folías, Chaconas, and other dances by Cabezón and Cabanilles, as well as dances collected and published by Martín i Coll.

Baroque & Before will be hosted and produced by Candice Agree. Share some of your ideas on Baroque music:

[email protected]

Also, watch for updates on Twitter: @baroquebefore






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