• John McCabe
  • Mary, Queen of Scots: Ballet Suite No. 2 (1976)

  • Novello & Co Ltd (World)

See also under 'Dramatic Works'

  • 11112210[timp]2perchp.celstr
  • 2222/423[=2]1/[timp]2perc/hp.cel/str
  • 22 min

Programme Note

Crowd Dance
Mary in Captivity
The Courtiers
Riccio's Lute Song
Mary and Darnley
Double Pas de trois

The two-act ballet Mary, Queen of Scots was commissioned by Scottish Ballet and first performed in Glasgow in March 1976. The scenario was by Noel Goodwin and the choreography by Peter Darrell. In this Suite, the music is of course presented in a concert version, with some slight changes necessitated by the new form of presentation. The six movements are as follows:

1. Crowd Dance: the bulk of this movement is taken from Act II, Scene 2, in which the Scottish crowd manifests its anger at the behaviour of Mary.

2. Mary in Captivity: from Act II, Scene 3, a solo dance expressing Mary's grief and loneliness in captivity.

3. The Courtiers: from Act I, Scene 2. The French courtiers at Mary's Scottish court are elegant and graceful. They are succeeded by a dance from some Scots courtiers, more forthright and less couth.

4. Riccio's Lute Dance: from Act I, Scene 3. Riccio, a favourite of Queen Mary's, entertains
her and the company present at a social supper party with a lively dance.

5. Mary and Darnley: from Act I, Scene 3. A romantic Pas de deux for Mary, pregnant with
the future King James, and Darnley.

6. Double Pas de trois: from the Prologue to Act I. In this dance, Mary and Elizabeth I, each
accompanied by two supporters, convey the basic conflict both personal and political, which is an important element in the development of her story.

© Copyright 1999 by John McCabe