Pastime with Good Company
The Influence of Continental Music On the Compositions of Henry VIII
ACMRS Award Winner Lecture & Brown Bag
Presented by Juliet Wilkins
PhD Student in English Literature, ASU
Henry VIII’s compositions, extant today in the British Library’s Henry VIII manuscript (Add MS 31922) are abundant, and they demonstrate a rudimentary skill in both verse and composition. Henry’s pieces are interesting beyond their royal authorship. His work can still stand in comparison to some of his contemporaries, such as Cornish and Farthing. Scholars have also read Henry VIII’s music to provide insight into how young nobles were instructed in their music studies. Music scholarship has focused on the relative merits of Henry VIII as composer. It is well-known that Henry’s court attracted musicians from Italy, France, the Netherlands, and elsewhere. My research will trace the threads of continental music in Henry’s songs, both on a compositional and a thematic level. I wish to determine how continental styles and techniques were used as instructional material in England during the period and how they influenced Henry’s intellectual development in particular.
Juliet Wilkins is a fourth-year PhD student at Arizona State University focusing on Early Modern Drama under the guidance of Dr. Cora Fox and the winner of the 2017 ACMRS Renaissance Graduate Student Travel Award. Her areas of research interests include the interdisciplinary study of music and literature, medical humanities and humoral theory, and affect theory. As part of her affiliation with Mayo Clinic, Juliet also serves as this year’s Education Committee chair for the National Cancer Registry Association. In the spare time she doesn’t have, Juliet performs locally and sing opera, Broadway, Early Modern, and Celtic music.