Six of the best: Purcell tercentenary events

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The Independent Culture
The Fairy Queen Barbican, Silk St, London, 7.30pm tonight (0171- 638 8891) Based on A Midsummer Night's Dream, Purcell's semi-opera is a series of exotic masques set in a magical world - the original stage directions called for swans dancing with fairies, huge fountains and peacocks. What this performance may lack in fantastical excess is more than made up for by the Sixteen Choir and Orchestra, Jeremy Sams's narrative and wonderful lighting and visual effects.

The Glory of the Temple and the Stage: Henry Purcell, 1659-1695 British Library, Gt Russell St, London WC1, Mon-Sat 10am-5pm, Sun 2.30-6pm; to 18 Feb, free A recently discovered volume containing keyboard music written in Purcell's own hand is the highlight of this exhibition which brings together all the composer's major autograph manuscripts. The show also looks at the work of the professional music copyists and Purcell's collaboration with music publishers John and Henry Playford.

England, My England Cinema 1, Barbican Centre, Silk St, London EC2 (0171- 638 8891) 2.30pm Sun, pounds 6, pounds 4 Special screening of Tony Palmer's new film about the life of Purcell, starring Simon Callow, Robert Stephens and Lucy Speed. Written by John Osborne, England, My England focuses on Purcell's wilder years at the court of Charles II.

Orpheus Britannicus I St. Giles's Church, Cripplegate, London, 1pm today, 4pm Sun, pounds 7/pounds 4 (0171-638 8891) Today The Consort of Musieke will perform a selection of secular songs from Orpheus Britannicus I, the collection of Purcell's songs which was published in 1698. The programme includes "Lost is my quiet"; "No, no resistance is vain"; "Bacchus is power divine", and two solo pieces for lute and harpsichord. Tomorrow catch the Purcell Quartet and Tenor Rufus Muller.

Purcell 300 Westminster Abbey, London, 7pm Tue 21 Nov (simultaneous broadcast on BBC2 and Radio 3) Fairest Isle, Radio 3's year-long celebration of English music and culture, and BBC2's Purcell season both reach a climax. Purcell 300 includes the world premiere of Sir Michael Tippet's Caliban's Song, Britten's Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra, Handel's Zadok the Priest and of course a wide selection of Purcell's greatest hits.

Staging Purcell Today Theatre Museum, 1E Tavistock St, London WC2, 21 Nov-20 May, Tue-Sun 11am 7pm, last admission 6.30pm; pounds 3, pounds 1.50 concs Purcell's four semi-operas and one through-sung opera are explored through the various productions which were staged this year as part of the anniversary celebrations.

Things to do, this weekend