Peace in Our Time

The aftermath of war has complex and widely varied cultural reverberations, as people reckon with physical destruction and emotional loss, shock and exhaustion, as well as relief and the fervent hope for peace. The art which emerges in the ashes of war may express grief, joy, hope, or cynicism; a renewal or loss of faith; […]

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The Baillot Quartet

This season, the New Esterházy Quartet (Lisa Weiss and Kati Kyme, violin; Anthony Martin, viola; and William Skeen, cello) have been treating Bay Area audiences to delightful snapshots of string quartet performance history. So far, the programs they brought to life—the 1766 “Tuscan Quartet” in September and the 1784 “Party at Storace” in November—have been […]

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Annus Novus in Gaudio

by Karen R. Clark The SFEMS concert series resumes the weekend of January 5–7 with a warm welcome to the New Year. The “elegant, full-blooded” singing of Vajra Voices and zesty, vibrant harp and vielle playing of Shira Kammen join together with the recorder, psaltery, and magic of Kit Higginson to illuminate the mystery and […]

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ABC at CJC

An English Country Garden of Music The SFEMS-CJC series resumes on Sunday, January 21, with the Alphabet Baroque Club, who will perform a charming concert of (mostly) British composers, with some commentary on British music and composers and their relation to the English country house of the 16th–18th centuries. Club members Judiyaba, treble viol and […]

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From Madrigal to Opera: Music and Poetry in 16th-century Italy

The madrigal was to Monteverdi what the symphony was to Haydn and the string quartet was to Beethoven: a form of endless inventiveness and a crucible of experimentation. Inexorably bound to the vital tradition of Petrarchan lyric poetry, the madrigal was where Italian composers developed their craft and pushed the boundaries of music as an […]

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A MESSAGE FROM OUR PRESIDENT

  What does early music mean to you? How do these artifacts of wood and brass channeling ancient voices speak to you in the here and now? Perhaps you had an epiphany hearing a familiar piece with a new clarity or transparency revealed through the instruments and performance practices of its composer’s time. Maybe you […]

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Master and Student

On Saturday, January 27, 2018, the Mid-Peninsula Recorder Orchestra will present a workshop entitled “Master and Student.” The workshop, directed by Rotem Gilbert, will explore the music of Franco-Flemish composers, illustrating the relationship between famous teachers and their equally famous students.  Music by Isaac, Senfl, Josquin, Gombert. Willaert and Gabrieli will be featured. Rotem Gilbert […]

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Dance In the New Year

Whether you feel more inclined to balance on your toes or kick up your heels, the first two weekends of 2018 promise not one, but two, intriguing workshops on historical dance. On Sunday, January 7, Catherine Turocy, the nation’s foremost baroque dance expert and founder of New York Baroque Dance Company, will take participants “Bach […]

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WAVE Appoints New Directors

BERKELEY—The Women’s Antique Vocal Ensemble (WAVE), a well-known member of the Bay Area early music scene, appointed new leaders this fall. Shira Kammen and Phoebe Jevtović Rosquist, who have often collaborated on early music ventures, now share the post of director. WAVE was founded by Cindy Beitmen in 1999. The 18-member women’s choir maintains a […]

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Sun of Justice

Early Music from Across the Mediterranean The world-renowned vocal ensemble Cappella Romana returns to Sacramento on Tuesday, December 19, with “A Byzantine Christmas,” a program featuring Byzantine Chants in Greek, Arabic, and English. The concert will be held in the superb acoustics of the city’s Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, 1017 11th Street. Cappella Romana […]

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Vienna, 1784: Quartet Party at Storace’s Place

  The weekend of November 17, New Esterházy Quartet (Kati Kyme and Lisa Weiss, violin; Anthony Martin, viola; and William Skeen, cello) will recreate a lively party in Vienna in 1784, when Mozart and Haydn played chamber music together with violin virtuoso Karl Ditters and composer Johann Vanhal at the house of their friend Stephen […]

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Mobley Featured in Second Cantata Collective Concert

On Sunday following Thanksgiving the Cantata Collective invite you to their second free concert of Bach cantatas at St Mary Magdalen Church in Berkeley. Featured will be countertenor Reginald Mobley singing Cantatas 54, Widerstehe doch der Sünde, and 170 Vergnügte Ruh, beliebte Seelenlust. Praised for his “crystalline diction and pure, evenly produced tone” by the […]

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Christmas in Poland and the Baltics, December 1–3

by Patricia Jennerjohn California Bach Society presents music of the season from Poland and the Baltic states of Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia. All of these countries have powerful national identities, which have been reinforced by their history of foreign occupation and Soviet domination. Poland, Lithuania, and Latvia have strong traditions of music for the Christmas/winter […]

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Superb Portativ Organ Available for Rent at St. Mark’s

by Jonathan Dimmock Organist and musical director Jonathan Dimmock has decided to move his Robert Byrd portativ organ from Davies Symphony Hall to St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, and to make it available for rental to early music groups needing a continuo organ while performing in that space. Here’s the story and a description of this […]

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Berlin Offers Three Classes This Winter

Tish Berlin is offering a number of recorder and early music drop-in classes from January to March, 2018: The Italian 16th-Century Madrigal Explore the lush harmonies and dangerous chromaticism of the late 16th century Italian madrigal by composers such as Gesualdo, Monteverdi, and Marenzio. Ground-breaking and earth-shaking works for upper intermediate to advanced singers, viols, […]

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Early Music Sundays

CJC and SFEMS Announce 2017–18 Series As you probably know, SFEMS curates not one but three separate concert series: our regular weekend season, showcasing major national and international artists of the early music world; the biennial Berkeley Festival and Exhibition; and our informal, monthly series of Sunday afternoon concerts at the California Jazz Conservatory (CJC), […]

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Mics Open Once Again at Hillside

The candles in are being lit and the Roland rolled out of storage for the resumption of Early Music Open Mic Night in the East Bay. This event is held on the fourth Wednesday of each month from 7:00 to 9:30 p.m. at the Hillside Community Church, 1422 Navellier Street, El Cerrito. This is your […]

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Auditions Open for 2018 Junior Bach Festival

From Director Lisa Grodin to Bay Area Music Teachers Welcome to the beginning of the Junior Bach Festival’s 2017–2018 season! We thank you if you have prepared students to audition for the Junior Bach Festival in the past, and we hope you will encourage your advanced students, up to 18 years of age, to apply […]

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