ARTEK, Gwendolyn Toth, Director


Bridge of Sighs—Monteverdi’s Madrigals Book VII

 Published in 1619, Monteverdi’s seventh book of madrigals contains some of the composer’s most beloved baroque works — passionate solos, duets, trios and more, including Tornate o cari baci, Augellin che la voce, and O viva fiamma. ARTEK, currently in the midst of recording this music, is renowned for exciting, dramatic performances of baroque music, especially Monteverdi. Innovative staging often infuses their performances with vitality and sometimes humor. It is not only the beauty of their voices but the clarity with which they express the texts and their meaning, which distinguishes this fine group.

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ARTEK: Laura Heimes and Clara Rottsolk, soprano; Barbara Hollinshead, mezzo-soprano; Ryland Angel, countertenor & tenor; Andrew Fuchs and Philip Anderson, tenor; Peter Becker, bass-baritone; Daniel Swenberg, theorbo; Gwendolyn Toth, harpsichord


First Presbyterian Church
1140 Cowper Street at Lincoln, Palo Alto

St. John’s Presbyterian Church
2727 College Ave at Garber, Berkeley

St. Mark’s Lutheran Church
1111 O’Farrell at Gough, San Francisco

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Audiences love ARTEK concerts for their exciting, dramatic performances of baroque music, with compelling musical settings of beautiful poetry and infectious dance rhythms that infuse the performances with vitality and spirit. ARTEK features some of America’s finest singers: Laura Heimes, soprano; Barbara Hollinshead, mezzo-soprano; Ryland Angel, countertenor; Philip Anderson, tenor; Michael Brown, tenor; and Peter Becker, bass-baritone. ARTEK instrumentalists include Robert Mealy, violin; Vita Wallace, violin; Motomi Igarashi, viola da gamba & lirone; Daniel Swenberg, theorbo; Charles Weaver, lute and guitar; Grant Herreid, lute; Christa Patton, harp; and Gwendolyn Toth, harpsichord and organ.

ARTEK toured from 1997 to 2002 with the Mark Morris Dance Group, visiting major venues in the United Kingdom, Italy, and Canada, as well as more than 50 of America’s premier theaters: BAM, Cal Performances in Berkeley, The Schubert Theater in Boston, McCarter Theater in Princeton, and many more from California to the Northeast.  ARTEK has appeared in Europe previously at the Regensburg Tage Alter Musik festival; at the Utrecht Fringe Festival; and in Feldkirchen, Austria; Dolni Lukavice, Czech Republic; Beaulieu, France; Konstanz, Germany; and Kreuzlingen, Switzerland.

In New York City area ARTEK has appeared on the Music Before 1800 series and on the Princeton Friends of Music series; on First Night New York at St. Bartholomew’s Church; as featured performers with the Bach-Schutz Society Conference; and on the Kaye Playhouse Chamber Music Series. ARTEK presents its own series of evening concerts each season at halls and churches in New York City and Princeton, NJ.  ARTEK also performs regularly throughout the concert season on the free midday concert series, Midtown Concerts, at St. Bartholomew’s Church in midtown Manhattan.  In spring 2001, director Gwendolyn Toth was awarded the Newell Jenkins Prize for excellence in early music performance in recognition of her work with ARTEK.


San Francisco Early Music Society