2016-17 Season Announnced

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About Us

  • Overview
  • Board
  • What Critics Say
  • Artists Presented
  • Volunteer
  • Contact Us

The San Diego Early Music Society is a non-profit organization founded to showcase the musical treasures of Europe’s medieval, Renaissance and Baroque periods, as performed on period instruments and in accordance with historical practice. The Society was established in 1981 and has presented concerts in churches, small halls, museums, and homes — settings for which the music was composed.

INTERNATIONAL CONCERT SERIES – Artists internationally renowned for their performances and recordings are presented in concert each season. World-class vocal and instrumental soloists, ensembles and chamber orchestras perform an exciting repertoire from various periods and countries.

Greta Treadgold, President
Laurent Planchon, Vice President, International Series
David Jacobson, Secretary
Martha Altus-Buller, Treasurer
Duane Gruber, Grants Coordinator
Kemer Thomson
Sally Buffington
Paul Carmona
Penelope Hawkins
Donna Guhl
Mark Lester
Praveen Nair
Patrick Setzer

“Blessing and honor and glory and power be unto thee, oh San Diego Early Music Society, that bringeth unto our still, silent town some Christmas fare other than the Messiah and the Nutcracker and those predictable programs of carols, forever and ever. Amen.”

— David Gregson,


“This plucky little society continues to make St. James by-the-Sea Episcopal Church a haven for some of the globe’s leading practitioners of medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque music.”

— Valerie Scher, San Diego Union-Tribune


“The San Diego Early Music Society, which every year is responsible for an undue proportion of the most exciting concerts in town...” ... “The concerts presented by the San Diego Early Music Society...regularly fill St. James by-the-Sea to the rafters, attracting those music lovers who know how much delight can be provided by music before Bach and Beethoven...”

— Jonathan Saville, San Diego Reader


“The SDEMS never engages anything less than the very finest, internationally famous artists for its concerts.”

— David Gregson, San Diego Magazine


“Its standards are the highest. If you’re a fan of music performed as closely as possible to the original from the medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque eras, I would urge you to buy tickets for anything the organization presents.”

— John Willett, San Diego Magazine


1996 “Top 10 classical concerts:” Pieter Wispelwey playing J.S. Bach’s Six Suites for Baroque Cello, selected by Valerie Scher of the San Diego Union-Tribune.


2000 “Top 10 classical concerts:” Freiburg Baroque Orchestra’s all Bach concert, selected by Valerie Scher of the San Diego Union-Tribune. “In commemorating the 250th anniversary of Bach’s death, the German orchestra revived a venerable aesthetic, demonstrating how music might have been performed in Bach’s era. It was a fine and fitting opening to the San Diego Early Music Society’s season.”

The Academy of Ancient Music * Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra * Amsterdam Loeki Stardust Quartet * Anonymous 4 * Arion * Artaria Quartet * Guido Balestracci * Baltimore Consort * The Boston Camerata * Anner Bijlsma * Cappella Artemisia * Michael Chance * Chanticleer * Ciaramella * The City Musick * Concerto Koeln * Concerto Palatino * The Concord Ensemble * Gary Cooper * Bertrand Cuiller * Lucy van Dael * Diabolus in Musica * Douce Memoire * The Dufay Collective * Ensemble Clement Janequin * Ensemble Project Ars Nova * El Mundo * Europa Galante * I Fagiolini * Fortune's Wheel * Fretwork * Freiburg Baroque Orchestra * Galateo Trio * Il Giardino Armonico * Julia Gooding * Arthur Haas * Pierre Hantai * Harp Consort * Wilbert Hazelzet * Hesperion XXI * John Holloway * Monica Huggett * Konrad Junghanel * Andrew Lawrence-King * King's Consort * The King's Noyse * Emma Kirkby * Kuijken Quartet * La Venexiana * Dan Laurin * Suzie LeBlanc * Les Voix Humaines * Liber Unusualis * Jakob Lindberg * Jaap ter Linden * London Baroque * Lars Ulrik Mortensen * Musica Ad Rhenum * Musica Pacifica * My Lord Chamberlain's Consort * Netherlands Bach Society * Newberry Consort * Orlando Consort * Paul O'Dette * Jacques Ogg * Paolo Pandolfo * Palladian Ensemble * Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra * Piffaro * Trevor Pinnock * Rachel Podger * Quatuor Mosaiques * Blandine Rannou * Derek Lee Ragin * Rebel Consort * Gonzalo Ruiz * Jordi Savall * Richard Savino * Sequentia * The Sixteen * Hopkinson Smith * Helene Schmitt * Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra * Tapestry * The Tallis Scholars * Daniel Taylor * Theatre of Early Music * Colin Tilney * Tragicomedia * Trio Sonnerie * Marion Verbruggen * Matthew White * Pieter Wispelwey
Are you interested in becoming more actively involved with “this plucky little society” (Valerie Scher, San Diego Union-Tribune)? We are currently seeking new Board and Committee members with ideas and enthusiasm. Even if you have only limited time available, we would welcome your involvement and getting to know you better. We have a particular need for people who are interested in publicity and fundraising, but we can use talents of all kinds. Please bombard us with questions! — we would love to give you more information. Click here to email us — be sure to include a phone number if you would like to receive a call from one of our Board members. We look forward to hearing from you.

P.O. Box 82008
San Diego, CA 92138


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