Resources

Happy Birthday & Quiz Winners Revealed !

 
 

Happy Birthday, King Richard III !

 
To be exact, happy 562. birthday !
 
KRA has no real birthday present for King Richard III, but we have three wonderful presents for our three
 

KRA-Champions 2014,

 
who won the KRA Quiz 2014:
 
KRA-Banner Quiz 2014
 

The prices for our winners are:

  • Finding Richard III: The Official Account“, by Annette Carson, Philippa Langley, Dr. Ashdown-Hill (Pb)
  •  

  • Richard III: A Small Guide to the Great Debate” by Annette Carson (Pb)
  •  

  • The King’s Grave: The Search for Richard III“, by Philippa Langley, Michael Jones (Pb)

 
Our three winners and this year’s King Richard Armitage – Champions are:
 

  • Iwona
  •  

  • Janet Slocombe
  •  

  • Andrea Castano

Congratulations
 
 
And they really are champions.
I admit, the quiz was hard this year, really hard.
So again this year, the selection of the winners was a point decision.
Still, I hope you all had fun answering the trick- and not so tricky questions.
 
 
The solution-page unfortunately was accumulated in a bit of a rush, as I had an overly hectic month of September, but I will try to extend it with more details and background information.
 
 

Richard III – New Spine Research

 
Shakespearean truth is theatrical truth, so is crunched, condensed and bended to fit the stage.
The same seems to apply for the spine of King Richard III…
 
New research confirms the side bending scoliosis and the higher right shoulder, though in combination with the found spiral helix form, King Richard III might have appeared normal to observers and rather un-handicapped in his movements.
 
This rather limits the potential timeframe of the ‘revealing’ of his ‘deformity’ down to his naked exposure in Leicester after his death. And, via the told and re-told versions of a century, enhanced and sensationalised, the stage version of Shakespeare’s King Richard III comes out.
 


 
Published report about the scientific reconstruction of King Richard III’s spine:
Research done by the University of Leicester in co-operation with the University of Cambridge, Loughborough University and the University Hospitals of Leicester.
(Copyright of the included material: University of Leicester)
 

 
Interactive model of the spine here:

(Copyright: University of Leicester)
 
Explanations and interview with Professor Bruno Morgan and Dr Piers Mitchell about their spine reconstruction here via SoundCloud:

 


 
Further background articles on the topic:
 

  • Antiquity: ‘The king in the car park’: new light on the death and burial of Richard III in the Grey Friars church, Leicester, in 1485, by Richard Buckley, Mathew Morris, Jo Appleby, Turi King, Deirdre O’Sullivan and Lin Foxhall (Antiquity, Volume: 87, Number: 336, Page: 519–538)
  •  

  • Timees Literary Supplement (TLS): Richard Crookback, by Sarah Knight and Mary Ann Lund (06.02.2013)
  •  

  • Scoliosis Research Society: Idiopathic Scoliosis

 
 


 
We will try to cover the topic in the article news-stream of KRA as usual.
 
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King Richard III & Envy

 
In my whole observations about the research concerning King Richard III, I always wonder, why everybody thinks to be able to judge him on some prejudice, rumour, envy or other motive and readily dismisses valid research done on a broad basis evaluating the available material.
A historian is bound to build as complete a basis for a research as possible and only after reviewing all (!) available sources, is allowed to come to a conclusion and has to argument from all possible angles the validity of the own conclusions.
 
So you will find me shaking my head in utter astonishment concerning the current discussion about King Richard III, which gets high press coverage in renowned newspapers and magazines.
I also find it hard to decide how best to present this new discussion to you, as in the major part it is so nonsensical, that I wonder why it gets so much and famous attention at all.
 
First I want to state that I am in no way connected to or bound to defend the University of Leicester and one certainly can argue if all researches done by them were necessary or interfered with the dignity of the person of King Richard III, but this current discussion certainly shows they were exceedingly necessary.
 
The argument now raised against the University of Leicester and their result to confirm the identity of the found skeleton as being of King Richard III, is that the skeleton could easily be of some other soldier buried there, just conveniently being of the direct female line leading to King Richard III’s mother.
How many unaccounted for relatives, having the exact female blood line of King Richard III, do you think are lying around somewhere? Or better are lying around at the exact spot King Richard III should be? And in addition have died in the Battle of Bosworth or by incident around that time near Leicester, so that they are buried in the Grey Friars’ Abbey? While just in the late court battle, one of the main arguments against a burial in Leicester is, that King Richard III’s family just had no connections to Leicester? So how can forgotten relatives turn up there? And were the ‘grey friars’, while so discriminating in burying people in the choir of their church, suddenly burying soldiers from the battlefield, carting them all the way from the Bosworth battlefield? Why then were only so few skeletons found and not hundreds and only one with battle marks? Oh, and what a strange method to bury them without clothes and with bound hands? Really, the ‘grey friars’ must have had no piety at all…
 
I could go on much longer, as a result of the conclusive multitude of researches done by the University of Leicester and though some think it may now be enough research done on the skeleton of King Richard III, still the results in their entirety (not necessarily one taken on its own) give us a very complete and convincing affirmation of the skeleton’s identity as being King Richard III.
 
Especially helpful in that regard to see the full picture of research results and why they were done, is the excessive pre-research done by Dr. John Ashdown-Hill, who with great determination researched the potential last burial place of King Richard III from all historical angles and laid down his progress of research as well as the conclusions he came to in his work “The Last Days of Richard III”, which we have recommended here repeatedly, as it is the go-to research which was essential in finding King Richard III.
 
 
You see, I think the counter-argument just is so far-fetched as envy possibly can make it. Perhaps, it is due to scholars feeling left out from the euphoria and joy over the find in Leicester and now try to jump on the media attention created by the extraordinary research results in Leicester.
I just don’t get it, why the media jumps on this envy train so readily and let itself be used in such a way.
 
The news stream includes the articles of this new conflict in the sidebar and in the 2014-archive (entries dated around the end of March 2014).
 
But it provides heated arguments and is one more battle area in the new “Wars of the Roses” or rather a new skirmish.
 
(I am quite certain the list of battles around King Richard III will have to be continued …)
 
But now to something creative and constructive about King Richard III:
 
 


♛ King Richard III ♛


 
Matt Lewis – New Podcast series about King Richard III (iTunes)
 

 
Also available via the YouTube channel of Matt Lewis.
 

Research & King Richard’s Life

 
First of all, before I start with news about King Richard III and actor Richard Armitage again in the new year 2014,
I hope you reached the year 2014 in good health and will have a wonderful and successful year!!!
 
My own beginning of the year 2014 was a bit sub-optimal in various aspects and so the year ahead has a very wide bandwidth of opportunity to get better ;o)
Hopefully your start into 2014 was better than mine and the year advances to a fantastic outcome, maybe even the hotly anticipated announcement of the King Richard Armitage – film.
 
 


♛ King Richard Armitage ♛


 

  • The Sag Harbor Express: The Hobbit’s Hunks, Part II: Lee Pace and Richard Armitage, by Danny Peary (02.01.2014) – Interview where Richard Armitage once again mentions King Richard III as his inspiration for Thorin Oakenshield in “The Hobbit”:
    [SPOILER ALERT, as ending of “The Hobbit” trilogy/book is mentioned in the following quote!]

    Danny Peary: Would you play your character any differently if you didn’t know that at the end of Tolkien’s book he dies?

    Richard Armitage: No, probably not. His death scene was left until quite late in the shoot. We didn’t shoot it until pick-ups, which I think was a good thing because I’d almost forgotten about that moment coming. I think that part of the creation of this character is offering the audience and other characters in the movie a potential future. He had to be someone who was going to be king, he was going to sit on that throne and return the dwarves to their former glory. And in a way, his death has to come by surprise to him. Having said that, I think one of the things – talking about Shakespeare again – that I admire about Richard the III is that he rides across the battlefield to fight, single-handedly, for his kingdom, for his crown. In the Battle of the Five Armies, Thorin is going to do something like that. It’s fatalistic. It’s fatalistic. It’s almost an act of suicide. Playing it, it’s good I forgot I needed to die!

 
 
But now to the late news and, you will almost expect it already, a new petition about King Richard III:
 
 


♛ King Richard III ♛


 
New Petition about King Richard III’s remains and their interim resting place:
Justice Review panel on the subject of Richard III, London,England.: Remove the remains of King Richard III to a neutral site
 
The current treatment of King Richard III’s bones reveals much about our modern attitude and lax treatment of death and the dead.
While such a treatment would have been seen as denigrating and demeaning to a person of King Richard III’s time, when the body was seen as a sacred unity given by God. Even medical research into the inner parts and structure of the body was met with great aversion and even banned by the church as it was destroying the God given ‘body’. Though it could be argued that King Richard III with his connections to scholars of the university of Padua might have had a more pro-active approach. Only a time-traveler might find out the truth and I hope he will then let us know …
Please take part in the petition(s) as you see fit and your belief dictates you.
 

Books & King Richard III

 
 


♛ King Richard & Books ♛


 
Christmas is coming up and as books still are one of the most favourite presents, I collect some reading tips here for you.
 
Not that I get through the multitude of new publications about King Richard right now – and some books still await me at Christmas – but there are new books I especially wanted to bring to your attention and recommend here, as I enjoyed reading them myself.
 
If you have books you would like to add to this recommendation, please feel free to either post them in the comment section of this post or send me a mail (contact form) to write and explain more about your recommendation and why you like the book(s).
 
Victoria Smith let us know her favourite King Richard III novel “The Murders of Richard III” by Elizabeth Peters and especially wrote a review for us.
 

(As usual here on KRA, earnings from embedded affiliate links on this site go to the charities recommended by actor Richard Armitage on his JustGiving page.)

 
 


♛ King Richard & Jane Shore ♛


 

Isolde Martyn – “Mistress to the Crown”

 
“Mistress to the Crown” follows the life and struggle for freedom of Jane Shore, the famous and influential mistress of King Richard III’s oldest brother, King Endward IV.
 
Her life never appeared to me as an especially romantic one, so a novel about Jane Shore coming out in a publishing house known for its extensive romantic novels instantly got my full interest.
 
From my previous comments about other works of the author Isolde Martyn, you already know that I adore her writing style.
Isolde Martyn also does not disappoint in this novel:
 

  • Her writing is fluent and gripping that once I began reading, I could not put the book down. Though I already know the story of Jane Shore, I still needed to know how her life and fate unfolds in the story.
  •  

  • The historical research which went into this novel is extensive and far beyond what I would normally expect from a historical novel. So for me, Isolde Martyn’s novels clearly are in a ‘historical novel’ class of their own.
    But the astonishing part of this for me is, that the books do not appear like a historical lecture, but unobtrusively and fluently the fate of Jane Shore unfolds in a way where I begin to care for her, while I never felt very ‘understanding’ for her and her fate before.
  •  

  • For all King Richard interested readers, of course King Richard plays his role in the book as well, though more as a background figure, but still actively influencing the fate of Jane Shore.

 
At the time of the first English publication (03/2013), we published an
interview with author Isolde Martyn (14.03.2013).
 
Now, the book is also available in a German edition:

(The print edition was not available via Amazon.de at the time of the post, but should be shortly. If you want to order it for Christmas, here is the direct link to the publisher.)
 
Links to the English version:

 
 


♛ King Richard & Art ♛


 
Author Matthew Lewis (interview of 27th of August 2013, with book links) in his novel “Loyalty” follows Jack Leslau’s (http://www.holbeinartworks.org/) research and picture analysis and brings King Richard III in connection with the Holbein household.
 

 


♛ King Richard & Research ♛


 

University of Leicester: ‘Beyond reasonable doubt’: archaeologists give first-hand account of Richard III discovery in new book, by Peter Thorley (04.11.2013)
 
From the intense research done to find and identify King Richard III, I must admit, I had expected a big volume of a book. The publication is a rather slim one, but so much filled with detail and information, that I am not the least bit disappointed.
Though much of the information and material had been published in the press already, the explanations and collection of image material and details known about King Richard III is unique and I am very glad to have this book as a valuable reference about the last days of King Richard III as well as his discovery in Leicester.
So though the book is not a detailed description about how King Richard III was found in Leicester – go to the publication by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones for that – I really can recommend this book for the invaluable collection of research results.
 


 

Philippa Langley/Michael Jones: The King’s Grave

 

 


 
Dr. John Ashdown-Hill did the essential research to enable the following work by the University of Leicester to find King Richard III.
His publications show the fascinating search for details so far missing or overlooked, but which proved to be exceedingly necessary to the final search:
 

 
More details about Dr. John Ashdown-Hill.
 
Just recently published:

 
Dr. John Ashdown-Hill also works on a new publication about King Richard III’s brother, George Plantagenet, the Duke of Clarence – you know the always irritating one where legend has it that he ended in a butt of Malmsey wine.
 
Announced for March 2014:

 


 
More book and author recommendations.
 
 

 
 

Book Review: Victoria Smith presents “The Murders of Richard III” by Elizabeth Peters

 

Elizabeth Peters “The Murders of Richard III”

 


♛ Review by Victoria Smith ♛


 
I love a good story. History is so often presented as a dry collection of names and dates, when in reality history is a retelling off the lives of people. And people are very rarely as dry as a list of their names and dates and would suggest.
So, when it comes to history I have learned more from well researched historical fiction than any academic tome.
 
Such was the case with The Murders of Richard the III written by Elizabeth Peters (Barbara Mertz).
She has a PhD in Egyptology and Ms. Peter’s scholastic aptitude is apparent in her historically detailed mysteries.
 
This book is set at a weekend retreat of Ricardians, who have gathered to reveal new evidence that they believe will finally exonerate Richard III of the murders of his nephews. With the media descending someone begins to recreate the murders attributed to Richard III. Debates about the legitimacy of Edward IV’s marriage to Elizabeth Woodville, the political machinations of the Duke of Buckingham, and the fates of the princes are peppered throughout the novel as the Ricardians are torn between solving the mysterious fate of the princes or identifying who is trying to discredit them or silence them forever.
 
I read the book because Elizabeth Peters is one of my favorite authors.
But, while the book is entertaining, it caused me to question my assumptions about Richard III. Most of what I thought about Richard III seems to have been based on Shakespeare’s’ interpretation of his character. As I read, I found myself chuckling over a character’s passionate disparaging of Sir Thomas More’s biography of Richard III as Tudor propaganda and wondering about the man who, in his short reign, was the center of so much conflict both during his lifetime and ours.
Not what I expected when I picked up Ms. Peters book for a few hours of entertainment!
 
For those of you who are well versed in Ricardian lore this book will not be a source of education as it was for me but you just might enjoy the humorous and engaging read.
 

 

King Richard News & Reviews

 


♛ King Richard III ♛


 

  • UK Human Rights Blog: Richard III on the move again – pitched into the current judicial review debate, by David Hart QC (23.10.2013)
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  • Lancashire Evening Post: Book review: The King’s Grave: The Search for Richard III by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones, by Pam Norfolk (24.10.2013)
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  • The Times: A weekend in … Richard III’s Leicester, by Stephen McClarence (24.10.2013) – A journey through King Richard III’s Leicester and Bosworth, with good tips and recommendations, if you plan a trip yourself!
  •  

  • The Hinckley Times: Vote on Richard III art to mark Bosworth connection, by Rachel Parish (28.10.2013)
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  • The Yorkshire Times: Philippa Langley, Michael Jones And Richard III, by Paul Morrison (28.10.2013)
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  • The Guardian: The King’s Grave: The Search for Richard III by Philippa Langley and Michael Jomes – review, by Thomas Penn (30.10.2013) – Quite detailed review about “The King’s Grave” by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones.
    Though, I must say, as one with a sibling having a similar condition as King Richard III had, just lower on the back, but almost as severe, I vehemently insist (!) on calling it a ‘condition’ and not a ‘disability’.
    The reviewer Mr. Penn should do some more medical research in this aspect, then he perhaps would recognize that this ‘condition’ not necessarily disables the afflicted from doing anything.
    In the case of King Richard III, the way and position his skeleton was found in could also have added to the severeness of the ‘condition’. So to really judge how much ‘disabled’ he was because of this ‘condition’ would necessitate a time-travel jump to see him alive.
    Seeing my sibling and comparing their ‘conditions’, I would even go so far as to think that the ‘condition’ only became known because of the exposure of his naked body after his death and posed a great opportunity to ‘bedevil’ the dead predecessor on the throne. This also would answer, why no contemporary source exists which mentions King Richard III’s ‘condition’ before his death.
    Though this is no total proof, as Henry Tudor and his minions were quite meticulous with destroying all evidence of his predecessor. So we for once might thank Henry Tudor for this cleaned up picture of King Richard III or this eternal riddle.
    Perhaps Thomas Penn, who also is the author of the book “The Winter King: Henry VII and the Dawn of Tudor England” about the reign of King Henry VII and the foundation of the Tudor dynasty, reveals more about the Tudor king’s way of transforming the perception and creating the story for history there. Though the topic of his book alone show, where his favours in the Battle of Bosworth lie.

 

Philippa Langley & King Richard III

 


♛ Philippa Langley ♛


 

  • BBC News Entertainment & Arts: Richard III hunter co-authors book on car park King (17.10.2013) – Philippa Langley and Michael Jones interviewed by Nick Higham about their new book and about ‘respect and dignity’ for King Richard III.
    Interesting video with the full interview in the article!
  •  
    .
     

     
     

    History Extra Interview – Philippa Langley and Michael Jones

     
    About the search for King Richard III and his grave

     
    Where should King Richard III be buried?

     
    Philippa Langley and the Channel4 documentary

     
    About the Princes in the Tower

     
    About “The White Queen”

     
     


    ♛ King Richard III ♛


     

    King Richard III in Print

     


    ♛ King Richard III ♛


     

    • ITV.com: Richard III book launched in Leicester (05.10.2013) – Booklaunch by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones, co-authors of the book about “The Search for Richard III. The Kings Grave”.
    •  
      .
       

    • ReadFulThingsBlog.com: The King’s Grave: by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones, by IoniaMartin (05.10.2013) – Detailed review about the book publication by Philppa Langley and Michael Jones.
    •  

    • Express: Book Review: The search for Richard III by Philippa Langley and Michael Jones, by Nigel Jones (06.10.2013) – The author of this review perhaps best describes his own review:

      curiously lop-sided

      The review is – as far as I can tell – solely based on the reading of the index and appendix of the book, which does not highly recommend its accuracy or significance to me, especially as it is in complete disagreement with the previous review by IoniaMartin. As the reviewer also has written a book about the Tower and the Princes in the Tower, it seems his review is more in his own defence, rather than an objective critique of the new publication.
      I will hold back my final judgement till I get my version of “The King’s Grave. The Search for Richard III”, but so far this review only reached to confirm my opinion that historians don’t like to re-research comfortably settled and accepted ‘truths’, even when new aspects arise.

    •  

    • GranthamJournal.co.uk: Richard III archaeologist to give talk in Grantham (06.10.2013) – Richard Buckley will give a talk about King Richard III and his discovery in Grantham, Harrowby Methodist Church on Saturday, 19 October 2013.
    •  

    • BBC News: Richard III Towton chapel remains are ‘found’ (07.10.2013) – To commemorate the many fallen in the Battle of Towton (1461), King Richard III began to build a chapel at the site, which at the time of his death was not yet completed and never was finished at a later time. (For more details about the battle and its significance, see: Towton Battlefield society
    •  

    • The Northern Echo: Cabinet Minister insists remains of Richard III must be buried in Leicester – not York, by Robert Merrick, Parliamentary Correspondent (08.10.2013) – Parliamentary debate in the Commons about final resting place for King Richard III and an independent panel to determine it.
    •  

    • Helen Rae Rants (Blog): The Wars of the Roses refought over Richard III’s Re-burial, by Helen Rae Rants! (09.10.2013) – A quote I just need to share, especially after the strange review mentioned above…
      Helen Rae about Philippa Langley:

      Me, I think she [Philippa Langley] deserves a medal for her efforts and the contribution she’s made to Ricardian history.

    •  

    • ThisIsLeicestershire.co.uk: Justice secretary insists Richard III be buried in Leicester, by David Owen (09.10.2013) – Justice secretary Chris Grayling speaks in the Commons.
    •  

    • InLoughborough.com: A year of discoveries showcased at the University of Leicester (10.10.2013) – Open Day at the University of Leicester on the 12th October 2013 will showcase King Richard III!
    •  

    • ThisIsLeicestershire.co.uk: Richard III: What do the people of York think? By Peter Warzynski (11.10.2013) – A brave journalist on his way to York to search for the truth. Is the new ‘War of the Cities’ that easy – York for York and Leicester for Leicester? Frontiers never were that easy during King Richard III’s days and never were clear and defined for him. Enemies became friends and friends easily and without prior notice became traitors. Otherwise the devastation of Bosworth never would have happened…
      Find out, if our frontiers are any different today from those 500 years back, here in this research by Peter Warzynski.
      [Should have known that Peter Warzynski was brave enough to find the truth. After all he was not frightened to come into contact with fans of an actor and wonderfully presented Leicester and his work and archaeological digging for King Richard III here on our website (24.08.2013).]

    KRA-Week 2013-8: Historical Music – The Orpheus Project

     
    KRA-Week 2013 - Banner 2

    Links: King Richard Week 2013 & Quiz

     
     
     


    ! Attention !

     

    The winners of the quiz are final and will be announced in a separate post today, where also the link to the quiz solutions will be revealed.

     


     
     
     


    ♕ ♛ ♕

     

    King Richard III & Music

     

    An interview with MaryAnn & Michael Tedstone

     

    The Orpheus Project

     


     
     
    Peter Warzynski in his interview (25.08.2013) gave us so insightful background information about Leicester and the euphoria about finding King Richard III there.
     
    What better method is there to express happiness and joy than in music?
    So I am very happy to present a Leicester based team of composers, MaryAnn & Michael Tedstone, with their group
     

    The Orpheus Project

     
    The two composers, MaryAnn & Michael Tedstone, brother and sister, are famous for their film music and their successful effort to combine old traditions with new musical elements.
    They embrace the history and time of King Richard III and present musical elements and lyrics he might have known or heard himself in their new recording:
     

    “The Last Plantagenet”

     
     
    To tease you a bit with the wonderful music, here is a sample of “The Last Plantagenet”.
     

     
    And I can assure you, it is worth having a look around the websites of the composer team, as their diverse music really is a joy and has a wide bandwidth of styles. I already spent quite a while on their websites and listened to their wonderful music:

     
    But now, I let them tell you themselves about their music and creative ideas behind “The Last Plantagenet”:
     
     


     
     
    How did the group “The Orpheus Project” come into existence and when?

    The Orpheus Project came into existence in 2011, when we recorded an Album of Ancient Greco Roman music. We wanted to create an ensemble made up of musicians who are experts in their fields but do not have traditional early music training. I think that early music can be over stylised and I wanted the music to have a natural feel. I felt that by making a new ensemble and having a new look at how music is written and created, we could provide a refreshingly new sound to different periods of music.

     
    Who composes / arranges / selects music / chooses, researches and finds texts / trains the group / records the music?

    MaryAnn does most of the composition/arranging music selection and trains the group.
    Michael records and produces the music. One of the things that makes The Orpheus Project unique is that we have our own industry standard studio. we are used to writing music and recording it for projects all over the world so it’s easy for us to make albums. We don’t have to worry about studio time and finding a good producer. We have one of the best music producers right here with us.

     
    What is the background of your group and your individual musicians?

    MaryAnn Tedstone studied Early music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with Philip Pickett.
    Michael Tedstone studied music production at Alchemea College of music.
    Glenn Sharp is a world music musician who play with the Jadid ensemble and is signed to Universal Music.
    We use a variety of other musicians and vocalists who are experts in their fields. Each period calls for different instruments so it’s hard to give further information

     
    Are your musicians only perform in this group or also individually or in other groups or ensembles?

    Our musicians regularly play in other ensembles. Its what keeps us fresh and excited about what we do.

     
    Why was this name chosen for the group? What connection does your group have to the Greek mythology?

    When Orpheus called to his father Apollo, he did so on a golden lyre. I have always wondered what the music was that called the God Apollo down to Earth to help his son Orpheus. The Orpheus Project seemed like a good name. Our first Album was of Greco Roman music too. It also combines old and new which is what The Orpheus Project is all about.

     
    Is your group mainly doing recordings or performing life?

    The group does both live recordings and performs live.
    Our next performance is for Leicester City Council where we are playing at a banquet.

     
    I saw in the information, that you Ms Tedstone, are mainly composing film music and soundtracks for movie and film productions and advertisements. Is this also the direction of “The Orpheus Project” or to what purpose was this group created?

    The Orpheus Project was intended to write music for historic documentaries and tv programmes but has become so much more due to the level of interest that we have received.

     
    Why the title “The Last Plantagenet” for your CD? It gives already an interpretation of the events surrounding King Richard III’s demise in the Battle of Bosworth as well as the legitimacy of his royal succession. Is that intended or a reference to the last Plantagenet King on the throne of England or not an exact reference to King Richard III at all?

    The album the Last Plantagenet is a reference to King Richard III. This album is music that he either might have heard, or music that has been specially composed in the style of the period.

     
    What connection does the music have with King Richard III and are the music pieces new arrangements of old music or new arrangements ‘in-the-style-of’?

    The Orpheus Project albums are intended to be a soundscape of what someone living in the period might have heard. For example our album SPQR is a representation of what Nero might have listened to.

     
    Where do the texts / lyrics come from? E.g. the French text of the piece “Douce Dame”.

    The Texts are all original. There are two by Dufay and One from Machaut.

     
    If they are historic texts, would they be something Richard III could have had access to?

    Yes we think King Richard III might have heard Douce Dame.

     
    What image of King Richard III does the music promote?
    (e.g. Richard III as courtier, as religious person of his time, as entertainment and music loving noble of his time,…)

    I hope that the music makes you think that if King Richard III was riding through the streets of Leicester he might have heard something like our music playing in the street or in a pub.

     
    What is your / your group’s connection to King Richard III?

    We became interested in King Richard III when his body was found in a car park in Leicester and we started researching the music straight away.

     
    What determined your choice of instruments in your group?

    Not every travelling troupe of musicians would have had every instrument available to them. I felt that the lute and the hurdy gurdy were expensive instruments and so we should have only one. We chose lute. We have thought about what would happen to instruments when musicians of the period slept in fields or woods in between towns and we think that would have been really bad for all the instruments. Hopefully they put them in wooden cases.

     
    Will your group get any official involvement in the ceremonies around King Richard III’s reburial next year?

    We are officially involved with Leicester council. They are selling our CD in the museum and promoting us as much as they can. The re-burial is a church event and I have no idea at this stage how much involvement we will have.

     
    What are your / your groups next plans for recordings? Is there more in store for all Richard III and late 15th century music fans?

    We are thinking of looking at Robin Hood next which is not too far away from King Richard III. Stay tuned on our website www.orpheusproject.co.uk for more details.

     
    Now that is good news for all Richard Armitage fans. Hopefully Sir Guy of Gisborne gets an extra place and special representation in the new music-project.
     
     
    We will also keep you informed when the music of “The Last Plantagenet” will become available on iTunes in September 2013.
     
    So far, you can order the CD version – £ 9,99 (PayPal payments accepted) – via alex@manikemusic.com.
    (Please get in contact for delivery rates, though they are very decent and partially free of charge and the CD is sent out worldwide.)
     
     
     

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