2014-15 International Series Concerts (Concluded)
New York Polyphony: “O How Glorious”
The Grammy-nominated vocal ensemble New York Polyphony opens our season with a program centered on Victoria’s Missa O quam gloriosum and works by Guerrero, Morales, and Palestrina. Founded in 2006, the ensemble maintains an active worldwide performance schedule, and frequently records. This performance marks their SDEMS series debut.
New York Polyphony has a “rich, natural sound that’s larger and more complex than the sum of its parts,” — National Public Radio
Piffaro: “Fortune My Foe: Ballads, Songs and Dances from Elizabethan England”
The rich intersection of music and poetry, of broadside ballads and popular tunes, of high art music and country dances, is brought to life through Piffaro’s varied and large collection of period wind and plucked string instruments, and the stunning voice of mezzo-soprano Maren Montalbano.
This program of music will include works of the great composers of Elizabethan England - William Byrd, Thomas Weelkes, and John Dowland, as well as anonymous ballads and dances of English society in the late 16th to early 17th centuries.
“Piffaro’s concerts work because of the showmanship and scholarship its musicians bring to their work.” — Tom Purdom Broad Street Review
Tapestry: “Song of Songs: Return to the Garden”
Tapestry is a Boston-based ensemble of women’s voices that delights in combining the medieval repertoire with modern compositions that resonate with ancient inspirations. We will hear ancient Hebrew cantillations, Sephardic tunes, Israel folk melodies and modern works on the Biblical texts by Ivan Moody and Shira Kammen. Mehmet Sanlikol, playing the dudek, ud and ney, and Shira Kammen on vielle and harp will join vocalists Cristi Catt, Laurie Monahan and Daniela Tosic for this concert.
“A strikingly accomplished vocal ensemble...” – Fanfare
Les Voix Humaines with Charles Daniels: “Perchance to Dream”
William and Henry Lawes were on the cutting edge of England’s musical life in the first half of the 17th century. They brilliantly set John Milton and Robert Herrick’s poems to music while Christopher Simpson and William Lawes perfected the art of virtuoso viol playing. Paradise was lost when Charles I was executed in 1649, leaving a drab stage and a musical moratorium. After a decade, the Merry Monarch, Charles II, returned bringing a new musical dream to the Fairest Isle. The stage was set for Henry Purcell and a new golden age of English music. Join tenor Charles Daniels, gambists Susie Napper and Margaret Little, and lutenist Sylvain Bergeron for a glorious evening of music for voice, archlute, and viols.
“It was easy to fall in love with Les Voix Humaines; these sonorous antiques (viols) become conduits for a wide range of moods and emotions.” — Rob Hubbard, St. Paul Pioneer Press
“Daniels was in a class of his own, effortlessly shading the music with a comprehensive range of dynamic and textual control.” — David Vickers, Andante
Musica ad Rhenum
Stefanie True (soprano) • Jed Wentz (flute) • Job ter Haar (violoncello) • Michael Borgstede (harpsichord):
“Bach Cantatas, Plus”
The intensely personal and emotional style that characterizes the performances of Musica ad Rhenum has earned them a special place on the early music scene. “Exhilarating,” “controversial,” “virtuoso” and “cutting-edge” are words that critics have used to describe the highly-charged atmosphere the group has created. Tonight’s program will feature Bach’s solo cantatas, Ich habe genug (BWV 82a) and Non sa che sia dolore (BWV 209), the Suite for cello (BWV 1007), the Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue, and the Orchestral Suite No 2 for flute and strings in b minor.
“It would be hard to imagine more ardent advocates for this music....” – Gramophone
“[Stefanie True] has a beautiful voice and her singing is very stylish.” – Musica Dei Donum
Concerto Köln: “Baroque Concertos for Harp, Mandolin and Flute”
SDEMS members asked for a return visit by Concerto Köln, and we’re only too happy to comply! Founded in 1985 by musicians dedicated to presenting period performances of music of the 18th and early 19th centuries, this 22-piece ensemble has few equals today. With more than 50 recordings to their credit, they have been hailed around the world. The program we will hear is comprised of concerti of Vivaldi, Telemann, Durante, Corelli and Handel for various combinations of soloists. If you love Baroque music and can attend only one concert this year, this is the one for you!
“...remarkable precision and zest...” – Allan Kozinn New York Times