Following an MMus in Renaissance and Baroque Music, Michelene Wandor created a number of seamless poetry-and-music programmes, performed by Siena. She has also written libretti for contemporary composers.


Narrative poem with the sacred and secular music by Salamone Rossi, Jewish musician in Renaissance Mantua. Siena. (Purcell Room, June, 2000)

Plain and Fancy
Benvenuto Cellini and his century in words and music. 16th century music performed by Siena. (Touring, summer, 2001)

The Marriage of True Minds
Words and music fantasia on the relationship between Shakespeare and Emilia Lanier, the first woman to publish a devotional poem, in early 17th-century London. Songs from the plays, and Elizabethan consort music. (Touring, 2003)

Music of the Prophets
Narrative poem about the resettlement of the Jews in England in 1656. Music by John Hingeston, Cromwell’s Master of Musicke. Supported by the European Association for Jewish Culture. (Touring, 2006)


Michelene Wandor, writer, author, playwright, dramatist, novelist, editor, poet, short story writer, musician, performer - UKYork
Poem-libretto for two voices, commissioned for the anniversary of the massacre of the Jews in York, 1190. Music by Malcolm Singer. St Michael le Belfrey, York, 1990

‘Michelene Wandor’s atmospheric libretto cleverly intertwines a variety of sources, both medieval and modern.’
– Yorkshire Evening Press

‘Miss Wandor’s text, an impressionist poem based on the medieval account of the Clifford’s Tower massacre, and on contemporary sources, provided the most cogent reason why several hundred of us were sitting where we were at that moment.’
– David Sonin, Jewish Chronicle

‘The imaginative text interweaves various narrative strands, through a simultaneous use of narrator, and underpinned almost continuously by a pervasive ostinato.’
– Musical Times

Libretto based on poem by John Cornford about the Spanish Civil War. Music by Matthew Linley. (Oriel College, Oxford, 1993)

Samson Agonistes
Libretto based on poem by Milton, for bass voice and choir. Music by Matthew Power. (Hillingdon Church, 1994)

The Indian Queen
New version of play by Dryden and Howard. Music by Henry Purcell. Fully staged production by the Kings Consort. (Queen Elizabeth Hall, 1995)

Brecht and Weill: A Diversion
An entertainment in words and music. With Janet Suzman, Janis Kelly and Julius Drake. (Greenwich Festival, 1995)

The Barthelemon Circle
Script to accompany music by women composers, Barthelemon and Gambarini, working in London 1750-1830. (London, 1999)

The Mask of Esther
Libretto for two solo voices and two choirs. Music by Malcolm Singer. (St Albans, 2001)