Dido’s Lament for ukulele

Dido’s Lament is one of the saddest but most beautiful arias, sung by a woman grieving over a broken heart before she dies. Such is the famous lament of Dido, Queen of Carthage, when her beloved Aeneas leaves her for a greater calling in Henry Purcell’s opera “Dido and Aeneas.”

The four-minute piece begins with a recitative of Dido saying farewell to her sister Belinda. It’s followed by the famous descending chromatic bass, paving the ominous path to her end. Originally written for a baroque ensemble, the piece has been transcribed for many kinds of ensembles and instruments, but not yet the ukulele. Why not?

For a treble instrument such as the soprano, concert, or tenor ukulele, playing the chords in first position will not retain this bass line unless it could be embedded in the inner voices, such as in a chord melody arrangement, in higher positions.

Is there another way to produce this bass line as the lowest voice rather than as an inner voice?

My quest for an easy but authentic transcription in the original key of G minor for ukulele may become one for ukulele duet or ensemble. Is it possible to find easy chords to accompany the singer and still retain the essence of this repeating bass line?

As I have not found one on the Internet, I will make this a project.

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