Our February concerts will have a little something for everyone.

In the words of Ruth Carver in her preview article for TheScen3.org: With pieces voted on by listeners at their recent December concerts, and a mix of other classics, this “A Taste for Baroque” program is sure to have something to suit every palate. As Artistic Director Frank Nowell explains, the program reflects a desire to have a “shared experience of live music” with the performers and the audience. The sheer variety of Baroque-era music means there is something for everyone offered in BCOC’s trademark un-intimidating style.
Check out the full article here.

Here are four things I’m particularly looking forward to with this program:

  1. The Telemann Concerto for Three Violins from his Tafelmusik Collection.
    I’m surprised this terrific triple concerto doesn’t get more airplay, and am excited to feature our own Martin Davids, Stacey Brady, and Brune Macary as soloists. You will likely recognize the opening, which mirrors the theme of Handel’s Arrival of the Queen of Sheba. Handel likely “borrowed” the tune from Telemann rather than the other way around. The two were lifelong friends, and what’s a little borrowing among friends?
  2. Our first BCOC performance of the Pachelbel Canon in D (yes, that one!).
    The piece that became ubiquitous in the 70’s and 80’s still endures, and was the #1 vote getter our  audience voting. For our performance I asked the same three violinists from the Tafelmusik concerto – Marty, Stacey and Brune -to play the Canon as one of the “appetizers” on our musical menu. I hope you enjoy our spin on this ultra-familiar piece… and will then check out Johann Pachelbel’s other wonderful music (yes, he wrote other music; ask me for recommendations!)
  3. Welcoming Adam Knight Gilbert as guest artist. Adam is director of the early music program at University of Southern California and my colleague on the board of Early Music America. He is especially known for his performances and recordings as a Renaissance wind specialist. Don’t miss his pre-concert talk one hour before each performance, with a demonstration of early instruments including bagpipes and shawm. For this program we’ll showcase the Baroque side of Adam’s artistry, with a virtuoso recorder concerto by Telemann.
  1. Original improvisations on Greensleeves and La Folia.
    Adam is also known for his masterful improvisations. I took this opportunity to ask him to lead us in group improvisations on two popular tunes from the Baroque. Improvisation is such an integral part of stylish Baroque music-making, and we are always seeking to push the boundaries in that direction!

It’s always a pleasure to feature our core ensemble of strings and continuo players. Martin Davids (usually our principal second violinist) will serve as guest concertmaster for these concerts. Leader-violinist Cynthia Miller Freivogel returns to Denver in May for Monteverdi’s Orfeo – more information on that very soon!

Note: The superb Canadian Baroque orchestra Tafelmusik comes to Denver and Boulder in early March as part of their intriguing “Tales of Two Cities” (Leipzig-Damascus Coffee House) tour. I highly encourage you to attend one of these performances if you can! The week of February 25th, visit this blog to read my interview with some of the artists involved in this wonderful multi-media production.

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