Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (MND-30)

(CM156: 30 cues). Note especially Sharp ‘The Songs and incidental music in MND’ [SCm]. MH142: ‘chaste’ recorders more apposite than the expressive viols. L87-88: musicians probably hidden throughout to convey the supernatural effect. MM171-4 has performance suggestions for appropriate Elizabethan music. SM22-23 notes association of ‘horns and hounds’ with Theseus, the ‘skiffle band’ of tongs and bones for the rustics and suggests broken consort or consort of viols to accompany the songs. Note also essays on MND in GPc vi 105-110 ‘The Music and Dancing’ and in AS2 cxx-cxxv ‘Lyricism, Music and Drama’, and on the Fairies’ and Bottom’s songs ME177-80. See also BR43-6 and AS (1979) cxxii-cxxv on dancing in the play.

act scene line Click here to find out more about suggested song
Gary Jay Williams in Our moonlight revels Univ. of Iowa, 1997, p. 26 notes how several integrated dances are called for during the play which are ‘far from being adornments’. During the course of the play perhaps a ballad could be introduced which was sung to the second of two splendid Elizabethan tunes both confusingly known under the title ‘Dulcina’; (for earlier tune cf 22d). This later tune ‘From Oberon in Fairyland’ with lyrics ascribed to Ben Jonson, opens with the line ‘The merry pranks of Robin Goodfellow’ (Puck’s other name). Lute (BO f83r 188) shawms, bass curtal and cornett ۞Gt24 i/ ۞YM22. Words underlaid in C143/ G148/ CW162-3 ‘Dulcina II’; tune SB130. 189
The Faery round of HOLBORNE would make an excellent short overture (188a) 190
I i 0 a) (B268): prolonged *fanfare 191
0{-127} b) L99-101: 1611 PEARCE The Urchin’s dance: dance-song written for Middleton’s ‘Blurt, Master Constable’; [For another setting RAVENSCROFT Rb8; tune G132, see separate incipit]
c) (B268): BYRD ‘By the moon’ à 4 (‘The Bells’) harp/ virginals; kF69/ MB xxvii 38; ۞ChQ12/ ۞Mo i 2; recorder ensemble; ed. S. Taylor. 3557746 OUP; arr. 2 viols ۞Ta 10. [Note: the ‘Tordiglione’ in DH12, steps 23-27, ۞BroL3/ ۞DH no 3 is fitted to this] (see 1479)
d) ‘When Daphne from fair Phoebus did fly’ (based on the folk song ‘Daphne’ or ‘The Shepherdess’) as a broadside ballad DO 119-121; ۞DO ii 12; as a country dance E38/ Eb20/ SB103/ RE24 ii; 40 i/ C388-9/ CW150-1/ SC iv 6/ SCt vii 6/ SCg 23; ۞BroJ4 iii/ ۞ChF8 i/ ۞CwM24/ ۞Du2/ ۞MgE5/ ۞MgN 1/ ۞Wn4/ ۞YF 19; M + viol consort MB xxii 63; à 5 TB3; ۞MgM2; FARNABY ‘Daphne’ variations kF112/ MB xxiv 36; kMP (f55v) 35; ۞ChF8 i
18 [I will wed thee in another key.]
72-3 [To live a barren sister all your life, Chanting faint hymns to the cold fruitless moon.]
183-4 [your tongue’s sweet air More tuneable than lark to shepherd’s ear]
247-51 [Then To the wood will he to-morrow night Pursue her…]
(MM172): 1597 ‘My Robin is to the Greenwood gone’ (48a) 192
ii 0 (Rustics’ motif) MM172: rehearsing *Bergomask dance on pipe and tabor, see below 193
V i 360, (150) and one perpetually rehearsing in a distrait manner the ‘Quodling’s Delight’ tune SB225/ CW276-7/ MK180; [as ‘Goddesses’ E52/ Eb29/Ek4/ RE25 iv, RE42 vi/ SC ii 10/ SCt iv 7/ SCg 8/ SCd 7; ۞BreE28/ ۞CwL 12/ ۞Du15 i/ ۞No 18; à 4 CM322-333; rSATB TD34; rSSA + side drum Ek4; rSS/AT/A Em5; rS Er3; rS + xylophone and chime bars Cm3; attrib. Giles FARNABY harmonisation kF114/ MB xxii 42; cf. Richard FARNABY ‘Fayne would I wedd’ harmonisation kF197/ Fa 10/ MB xx 57; rS + k HU2/ Fr4; ۞No 18; (related tune also used by CAMPION 1617 EL LS 7 (ii 11): 24/ SA421; ۞Bw20/ ۞HL1/ ۞NeE15); as ‘The Northern Lasses lamentation’ (‘The Oak and the Ash’) DO 171; 247; ۞CwL 12/ ۞DO ii 20
II i 0-59 (Fairies’, the Changeling, and Robin Goodfellow motifs) 194
2-15 [Over hill, over dale…the shrewd and knavish sprite Call’d Robin Goodfellow…]
a) MM172: 1611 attrib. (by Cutts) JOHNSON ‘ The Fairey Masque’: antimasque for ‘Oberon’ 1610 ‘Dare you haunt our hallow’d green’ à 2 (LM57: f31v, 83 r) SA108/ Rb6; treble instr + continuo LMw ii 33; bc or rAATB LMh 7; lute (GB-Cu f24v Dd 6 36) kSA250; Fayris Daunce (GB-Lbl Add 38539 f10) Chan 24a-b; ۞MgO 16/ ۞Sa 15
b) ۞BroS6; SCm 1: Sellenger’s round (188d)
c) L99-101 PEARCE ‘Urchin’s dance’ (191b)
d) DO335-8 ‘The mad merry pranks of Robin Goodfellow’ (‘From Oberon in Fairyland’) set to ‘As at noon Dulcina rested’ melody; ۞DO ii 57 (22d)
e) Fairy dance, melody RE 162 v
57 Enter Oberon …with his train; and Titania …with hers MM172 entrée de ballet possible here 195
i) for Oberon’s train: JOHNSON Fairies’ Dance (194a)
ii) for Titania’s train: BENNET Elves’ Dance. sung and handclapped; ‘Round about in a fairy ring’ à 4 Rb9/ CB v 10
66-68 […in the shape of Corin, sat all day, Playing on pipes of corn, and versing love To amorous Phillida] 196
a) DO307-313 ‘Phillida was a fair young maid’ set to ‘Filliday’ kMP / as ‘A Gig’ in (GB-Cu 4 22); ۞DO ii 51 i; as ‘Phillida flouts me’ in Cosyn virginal book; melody set to ‘Oh, what a plague is love’ MK210; ۞DO ii 51 iii
b) DO309-310 text as a) set to ‘Stingo’ C308/ E10; ۞DO ii 51 ii /۞Wn2; 4 violins + bc ۞MsE i 4
86 [To dance our ringlets to the whist;ing wind’]
102 [No night is now with hymn or carol blessed.]
120 [I do but beg a little changeling boy. To be my henchman.] DLC ‘Schwarzknab’ Hoftanz rTR21 197
140-142 […If you will patiently dance in our round, And see our moonlight revels, go with us.] 198
DO353-4 1567 John Pickering ‘Farewell Adieu, that courtly life’ set to ‘Sellenger’s round’; ۞DO ii 61 (188d)
145 Exit Titania with her train (B237) country round dance (MM172) Fairies’ Dance (194a) 199
150-3 [And heard a mermaid on a dolphin’s back Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath That the rude sea grew civil at her song And certain stars shot madly from their spheres To hear the sea-maid’s music?] cf. J. H. Long Music in English Renaissance drama. University of Kentucky Press, l968, pp. 55-56
231 [Apollo flies, and Daphne holds the chase] DO119-120 ‘When Daphne from fair Phoebus did fly’ (191d) 200
254 [Lulled in these flowers with dances and delights.]
ii 1, 7 [Come, now a *roundel and a fairy song.] [Sing me now asleep]
9-30 Fairies sing. [7]. You spotted snakes with double tongue…
(13-19, 24-30) {Chorus} {dancing} Philiomel with melody, Sing in our sweet lullaby… L86-7: accompanied with broken consort; ۞Dart (children sing this unacc) 201
a) uL85-87 1597 HOLBORNE [J98] Lullabie: à 5: H4/ H1022; rS/AAA/TTB Hq2; ۞HsT10; bqHa I 4; as galliard 1: HB9 (bandora); lute HB App.1; ۞DoP 18/ ۞Q12; cittern HC55.
b) uCM157-163 ‘Bara Fostus (Barrow Faustus) Dreame’ (‘The Shepherd’s joy’: Come sweet love, let sorrow) tune SB23; 2 voices + rSATB; lute tune (BA20, p. 29/ PI f24 as ‘A Toy’) LU38/ PN 1; gDU7; CW148-9, as song C240; ۞Wb13; kMP5/ F18; anon, V248/ Fn83 attrib. to BYRD ۞NeE17); KETE published Rosseter 1609 Barrow Faustus Dreame ۞MsE i 3; VALLET Chanson angloise VS i 88
c) uSCm 8:2/ ۞BroS6/ ۞Gt1/ ۞Mh20 ‘Sellenger’s round’ (B269) for dance, song and chorus: sung by unseen children’s voices (188d)
d) (B269) set to ‘Millfield’ (10f)
e) uDO479-480 set to ‘Dulcina’ melody and words; as song with cittern ۞DO i 81 (22d)
f) set to ‘Robin Goodfellow’ ۞Ph34 (189)
162 [entr’acte] (DLC) BYRD ‘Crown’d with flowers and lilies: consort song, voice and viols in S&B cw15; also SST/AT/AB 1611 in cw14 202
III i 101 [I’ll lead you about a round]
117 [I will sing, that they shall hear I am not afraid].
118-21 [8]. {Sings} The ousel-cock, so black of hue,…The throstle with his note so true,… …The wren… 203
123-6 {sings} The finch, the sparrow, and the lark, The plainsong cuckoo grey, Whose note full many a man doth mark…
a) uL89-90/ C115 country dance tune ‘Rowland’ ‘Lord Willoughbies welcome home’) SB p467-71 describes its complex history; lute (FD f9v) SB294/ CH58v, 99v PI f25/ And PIv 6, 12, Th78/ PO 10/ RS25); ۞Wt6; l/kt RS25/ t in LSoc B3; gHZ 1; voice +bc ۞MsE i 21; ۞Ta8; tune RE7 vi/ C114-6/ SCns ; rSATB CM340-2; (kMP 64v); DOWLAND setting as ‘My Lord W…’ lute/t D66, 66a/ SB294; ۞N4/ ۞OD i 4/ ۞OD iv 10/ ۞Ld16/ ۞Mf3/ ۞Th6/ ۞YF25 ii; 2l/tk LR36/ ST5; ۞CmD vii 20/ ۞Du3/ ۞L4/ ۞MgN 14; 2gSTg6; rS/TS/T Eh 11; rS/A/T+g RD9; gHZ1; ۞Mh21; BYRD variations ‘Rowland’ (PI ) PIv 7; kBY33/ BYf5/ F160/ MB xxvii 7; ۞BreG19/ ۞Mo i 1/ ۞N5/ ۞OH 17/ ۞Py 19; 2 viols ۞ChF14/; adapted C115, CW 152; 3 strains of the variations quoted PE73; lute/tk BYnl 6/ JE10/ RS25; à 4 CM340-342; rSATB SR9; rAATB Oriel OL107 (with ‘*Carman’s whistle’); tune and words to the popular ballad ‘Stand to it, noble pikemen PE72; CUTTING setting as ‘Lord Willoughby’s welcome’ in D minor (PI 68); tkJE9/ P168; ۞HeP 10; WIGTHORPE as ‘Roland’ or ‘Come hither’ à 5 TB6; ۞MgN 18; a Paduana in HAUSSMANN Paduana and 2 galliards à 5 LPM EML 130; ۞MnF16-17; à 5 SCHEIDT ‘O nachbar Roland’ cw i-iii 47; ۞KnK 13; rSSATB in 2 Canzonas Oriel OL 158; VALLET ‘Soet Robert’ lute 1615 VS i 36; tune SB293; ROBINSON RS25
b) uCM299 WARD (orig. attrib. Farnaby) as ‘Woodycock’ kF141; ۞EnG2/ ۞Py 16; rB/A+k DE7 (esp. effective Variation 6 for its harmonisation) [as country dance ‘The Whirligig’ to the tune Woodicock (or, ‘The Green Man’)], E11, 15/ Eb105/ SC iv 8/ SCt vii 8/ RE38 v/ SB530/ rSS/AA Ec14; ۞BroP8/ ۞Bro L19/ ۞BroS14/ ۞CwM15/ ۞EsU21/ ۞Ph35; ۞Wn15; DH13, 68, steps 66-7, ۞DH no 19; l/t RN l; gBG5; à 4 sCM299; b-v variations MB ix 108; anon variations rS/A/T RC iii 4]
c) uCM164-5: 1580 Rogero voice + rSATB (120c)
d) (B269): In Peascod Time (55a)
e) uDO477-8 set to ‘Whoop, do me no harm, good man’ (410)
f) (On Line Shakespeare) set to ‘The Old Mole’
127-8 [for indeed. who would set his wit to so foolish a bird?…though he cry ‘Cuckoo’]
130-1 [I pray thee gentle mortal, sing again: Mine ear is much enamoured of thy note]
ii 151 [And they shall…sing while thou on pressèd flowers doth sleep]
207 [Both warbling one song, both in one key]
397-400 Up and down. uDO418-9 round à 3; ۞DO i 62 204
IV i 0 SM22 ‘Ye spotted snakes’ instrumentally 205 (201)
11 [Monsieur Cobweb, good monsieur] DO266-270 Deloney’s ‘O noble England’ set to ‘Monsieur’s Almaine’ 206 (256a ii)
27-8 [What, wilt thou hear some music, my sweet love?/ I have a reasonable good ear in music Lets have the tongs and the bones] i.e. rebec, knackers, triangle [Rural music] L91- 92: [no music appears to follow, but see GPc vi 110] [cf.*country music]. The Furnival edition of the play (1895, p. 175) mentions sketches by Inigo Jones illustrating the two figures a) holding metal ‘tonges and key’ and b) ‘knackers’of bone or hard wood 207
80-85 [Titania, music call; and strike more dead Than common sleep of all these five the sense./
Music, ho– music such as charmeth sleep].
*{Still music} LH87 probably broken consort. BR45 suggests the bergamask at V i 360 is a burlesque of this courtly dance. V182 comments on the ambiguous word ‘still’ which has led to such interpretations as continues/ temporary silence/ peaceful. 208
a) L92: 1597 DOWLAND ‘Sleep wayward thoughts’ (broken consort) adapted part song MB vi; lute song: facsimile BL I (f7) 9/ BL iii (28v)24; EL LS1 (i 2): 13/ Df 12/ PM ii 5/ FL ii 7; voice + lute/guitar DLe 2; text and melody L92; ۞Aw i 8/ ۞CmD i 13; +g SH4
b) (B269-270): 1615 Robert JOHNSON ‘Care-charming sleep’ S + lute (115c)
c) uSCm4 ‘The Seeds of Love’ or ‘The Sprig of thyme’
d) (B269-70): galliard ‘Trip and go’ (148)
83-91 [Sound, music. {The,music changes} MM98 recorders. BR136 *pavan and *alman 209
84-85 [Come, my queen, take hands with me, And rock the ground whereon these sleepers be.] Oberon and Titania dance [Now thou and I are new in amity, And will tomorrow midnight solemnly Dance in Duke Theseus’ house, triumphantly…]
a) L94-5: 1621 ADSON ‘Pavane’ = Ayre’ à 5 viols (i.e. Courtly Masquing Ayres à 5 no 1/ SA279/ AC i 1/ MB ix 54/ ACb i 1; à 2 (LM9 15v, 70v) ‘Adson’s masque [no 1]’ LMw i 1/ SA60; rA+g LMz 11 (Note the two dances which follow this in the source, SA136-7); ۞Wn12 (as ‘Masque no, 6’)
b) (B269-270): Galliard: ‘Trip and go’ morris dance (played softly ….?) (148)
c) (DLC) PRAETORIUS Courante, P179 à 4; rS+g+continuo Pr8; ۞NeP12 ii
d) DO281 ‘O Death, rock me asleep’ melody and words (56a)
92-101 [Fairy king, attend, and mark: I do hear the morning lark.] 210
(B270): ‘Trip and go’ as dance song à 3 (Titania, Oberon and Puck) (148)
102 Wind horns within. (B270): N&203. GPc vi 110 Shakespeare’s picturing of sunrise; should be ‘elaborately symphonic’
105-117 [My love shall hear the music of my hounds… mark the musical confusion Of hounds and echo in conjunction./ I was with Hercules and Cadmus once When in a wood in Crete they bayed the bear With hounds of Sparta Never did I hear Such gallant chiding…every region near Seemed all one mutual cry. I never heard So musical a discord, such sweet thunder ].
123-6 [A cry more tuneable Was never holla’d to, nor cheered with horn, In Crete, in Sparta, nor in Thessaly. Judge when you hear.]
DO215-7 ‘In Crete when Daedalus began his long exile’ words and tune; ۞DO ii 30 lute (LO 19v-20/ BA90) SB232 211
137 [Go, bid the huntsmen wake them with their horns] Shout within; wind horns
L95 horns representing mortals returning to world of reality
210-4 [I will get Peter Quince to write a ballad of this dream. It shall be called ‘Bottom’s Dream’…I will sing it…before the Duke…I shall sing it at her death.
V i {0} (Flourish of trumpets) (B270) prolonged fanfare
32-33, 39-40 [what masques, what dances shall we have, To wear away this long age of three hours…what abridgement have you for this evening? What masque? what music?]
44-49 [‘The battle with the centaurs, to be sung By an Athenian eunuch to the harp.’/ We’ll none of that… ‘The riot of the tipsy bacchanals, Tearing the Thracian singer in their rage’]
60 [How shall we find the concord of this discord?]
107 {Flourish trumpets} (B270) feeble off key trumpet blast
122-3 [Indeed, he hath played on this prologue like a child on a recorder– a sound, but not in government].
126 Enter {with a trumpeter before them}„,for the dumb show
128-148 [This man is Pyramus… His dagger drew, and died] DO318-320 ‘You dames that climb the mount of Helicon’ set to the tune of ‘The Downright squire’ (LO f18v) lute SB123; ۞DO ii 52 212
271-282 What dreadful dole is here! SG 1: in this blissfully absurd lament, a send up of a consort song ‘Gulchardo’ opening ‘Come tread the paths’ sMB xxii 3/ WT15-16 213
290-301 [Come tears, confound;… thus die I, thus, thus, thus…Now die, die, die, die, die] Edward Doughtie English Renaissance song. Twayne, Boston, 1986, p.65 draws attention to consort songs which Bottom is parodying as in laments by STROGERS and FARRANT 214 (1018, 1431)
347-8 [Will it please you to hear a *Bergomask dance between two of our company?]
354-5 [But come, your Bergomask. Let your epilogue alone] ..,dance a bergomask. Dover Wilson: *bergamasque here performs the function of an antimasque; BR45 suggests this is a burlesque of the courtly dance at IV i 85 215
a) L96: jig: Wolsey’s Wilde (‘Wilson’s wilde’) (9b)
b) ۞Dart/ ۞BroS21/ ۞Gt3 ‘La Bergamaska’ in the Straloch lute copy in MS GB-En 5.2.18 ‘The barg of maske’; lute/t Bergamaske duet, treble and ground (BO 1r 1)/ NTi 2; lute ۞St 16; rS + k DX1 tr-v DNt; b-v DN p7; viol consort ۞St16; rSATB +g CM349-50; rS/A/T+S/A/T +ST RC i 20; rS/AA/TTB BC i 39; rA CT49; a latter setting is by FRESCOBALDI Bergamasca à 4 rS/AA/TTB LPM DOL 307 (193)
c) SCm5: Greensleeves (350b)
d) (B271) ‘Now Robin lend to me thy bow’ (always danced to a song accompaniment). Catch à 4 Rp63 (68e)
e) ESI 127-132 La Romanesca: air de danse (galliard) Bottregari lute book 1574 gCR11
f) DO330-4 NICHOLSON ‘The Rich Jew’ (166c, 963)
g) (WT112) FARNABY ‘Up tails all’ (276a)
h) (WT112) MORLEY Alman F152`; à 4 sCM308-9; rS + k HU4;
(356-364) (B27I) the great bell heard striking midnight
356; 364 [The iron tongue of midnight hath told twelve] [Flourish of trumpets] Exeunt
ii 1-20 [Now the hungry lion roars…] (B271) (spoken with distant flutes) 216
1576 anon ‘How can the tree but waste and wither away’ BB28/ ELS ii 21: 12/ G36; facsimile BL iii (f27v) 23 there attributed to BARLEY; tune CW72-3; SB197; lute solo BB28; song with bandora EL (ii 21) LS19: 12; M + A/TTT/BB viols MB xxii 17; ۞MgE 16/ ۞MgN 11; (CCp 12) has different harmonisation
{21-53} NS/ L98-101 re-group these lines into five six-line stanzas and the closing couple; Oberon and Titania intone above the dance-song melody and the Fairies sing
21-26 1. OBERON Through the house give glimmering light…And this ditty after me Sing, and dance it trippingly. NS avers is sung; but GPc vi 108-9 spoken
27-30 2. TITANIA First rehearse your song by rote, To each word a warbling note: Hand in hand, with fairy grace, Will we sing, and bless this place
(33-44) 3-4. FAIRIES To the best bride-bed will we…Shall upon these children be.
(45-52) 5. OBERON With this field-dew consecrate/ Meet me all at break of day
or 31-52 {The song. The fairies dance} OBERON Now, until the break of day cf V239 217
GPc vi 108: should be spoken; NS: sung, B271: sung by Oberon then repeated by all using the wedding song ‘Roses, their sharp spines being gone’ from TNK; (375)
see also comment in V239
a) uL99-101/ (B271): PEARCE The Urchin’s dance ‘By the moon’ (191b)
b) SCm8: Final dance and exit i. Nonesuch; ii. Sellenger’s round (140), (188d)
c) uCM166-170: 1598 ‘I loathe that I did love’ (50b)
d) (B268): BYRD ‘The Bells’ harp/ virginals, fading at end (191c)
e) (On line Shakespeare) DOWLAND Frog galliard (298a)
Epilogue 1-16 [If we shadows have offended…]
CM171-5: instrumentation adapted from ‘I loathe’ and ‘Bara-Faustus’ rSATB (50b) 218 (201b, 217c)

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