String Quartet on a Mission

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Thalea String Quartet’s “trans-Atlantic encounters, ” with composers blending European modes of expression with American modes, appealed to first-time listeners as well as seasoned aficionados at the Gardner Sunday.    [continued]

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To Blend or Not To Blend

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Jamie Kirsch and Lisa Graham led 241 singers and players of Chorus pro Musica and Metropolitan Chorale in little-known Kodály, Janáček, and Mendelssohn at Jordan Hall last night for quite the choral feast.    [continued]

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H + H Entices with C. P. E. Bach Cello Concerto

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With Bernard Labadie at the helm, Guy Fishman as soloist, and a compositional array spanning 1750 to 1807, the Handel and Haydn Society presented its 2,478th concert last night at Symphony Hall. Repeated Sunday at 3:00    [continued]

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Vox Luminis – A Well-Named Ensemble

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The Boston Early Music Festival’s welcome re-engagement of Vox Luminis in a program of German motets, representing most of the Bach family tree, brought great pleasure to the First Church, Cambridge crowd Saturday.    [continued]

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Revisiting “The Bach Dynasty” Five Years In

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The Belgian period vocal ensemble Vox Luminis brought its North American tour to a close on Saturday with “The Bach Dynasty,” a set of less-familiar music by members of J.S. Bach’s family, plus a concluding cantata by Johann Sebastian himself, for the Boston Early Music Festival at First Church, Congregational on Saturday.    [continued]

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Solomon Cast Regal Charms

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With contralto Emily Marvosh in the title role, the Cantata Singers Chorus and Orchestra gave us a Solomon for the ages Saturday night at Jordan Hall.    [continued]

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Mozart According to Rosenbaum

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Victor Rosenbaum selected Mozart works for his Sunday evening at Jordan Hall with violist Kim Kashkashian, Laurence Lesser on cello and Kristopher Tong on violin.    [continued]

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Blue Heron, Masters of Polyphony

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After hearing the ensemble twice this weekend in the seaport district of Boston, I am delighted to report that, like a well-seasoned string quartet, Blue Heron simply gets better and better.    [continued]

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AFC Deploys Noir Locution

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Yclept “American Noir,” the Criers’ Jordan Hall outing on Friday contained music written by American and American-resident composers in the tight span from 1936-1960.    [continued]

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Puccini’s Queen?  No, Pacini’s

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My musical odyssey to the Huntington Avenue Theater last night led me to the apparent North American premiere of Maria, Regina d’Inghilterra (Mary, Queen of England) by Giovanni Pacini (1796-1867), a prolific and once-famous composer not one of whose notes I had heard before in any genre. Repeats Sunday at 2:00.    [continued]

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Leipzig Resounds in Boston

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Back in February 2018, we got a “Leipzig Week in Boston” at Symphony Hall in recognition of the fact that the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra now share the same music director, Andris Nelsons. This past Tuesday, to a packed house, Nelsons led the GHO in the Leipzig-relatated Mahler’s Blumine, the Schumann Cello Concerto, with Gautier Capuçon, the Overture to Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer, and Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 3 (Scottish).    [continued]

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A Blossom at the End

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Blue Heron’s “The Sweet Sound of Medieval Song” taught how to listen to medieval polyphony with young and old ears at Brandeis University’s Berlin Chapel yesterday as part of an symposium among theorists, scribes, scholars, and performers.    [continued]

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Violinist Begins With Encores

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Violinist Robyn Bollinger, who strives to strengthen and reinvigorate the relationships among audience, performer and music, performed “Virtuoso Violin” for Lifetime Learning Sound of Music Performance Series at Temple Shalom in West Newton Monday.    [continued]

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Next Year and Every Year, the Jerusalem 4

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Until Saturday evening in Jordan Hall, I knew the Jerusalem Quartet only through two of its recordings, the recent Yiddish Caberet and a luminous Debussy/Ravel disc. It is my pleasure to say the ensemble sounded even better live for the Celebrity Series of Boston The Quartet’s members are Alexander Pavlosvsky and Sergei Bresler, violins; Ori    [continued]

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In Search of the Russian Soul

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Skylark Vocal Ensemble delivered Rachmaninoff’s a cappella masterpiece, the All-Night Vigil, with conviction, vigor, disarming earnestness, and three Russian basses at Chestnut Hill’s intimate Church of the Redeemer the day before Vancouver’s Pacific Baroque opened BEMF’s season.    [continued]

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Boston Baroque: Adept Virtuosi

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Music Director Martin Pearlman led the orchestra of period instruments in a welcome display of instrumental and vocal virtuosity Friday at Jordan Hall, where we found soprano soloist Amanda Forsythe at the top of her game in a group of dazzling arias.    [continued]

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GHO – BSO Collaboration Resumes Spectacularly

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Celebrity Series of Boston and BSO co-presented Gewandhausorchester Leipzig as Andris Nelsons led the GHO in Schubert’s “The Great” C Major Symphony and Brahms’s Double Concerto; violinist Leonidas Kavakos and cellist Gautier Capuçon took the solo parts.    [continued]

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Incidental Words and Fragmented Movements

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Last night the Mertz Trio mixed its media with varied success, though the musical interpretations at the Plimpton-Shattock Black Box always carried great artistry.    [continued]

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