Portland Early Music Festival
The 6th Annual Portland Early Music Festival will bring together singers and instrumentalists from New England and beyond, specializing in the performance of music from the late Renaissance through the Classical period. The festival will take place over three days, from Friday to Sunday, October 27-29, 2017.
Below is a synopsis of the upcoming 2017 Early Music Festival:
Free pre-festival music events at the Portland Public Library
See the following list of free pre-festival music events at the Portland Public Library. For the third of these events, Professor Raffael Scheck of Colby College will assist Timothy Burris.
See Burris’s bio here: http://portlandconservatoryofmusic.org/faculty/timothy-burris/
Free lute masterclass: Taught by Timothy Burris
Free guitar masterclass: Taught by Petra Poláčková, featured artist for the Sunday concert.
Friday, October 27, 2017
Music for Broken Consort:
One of the more lively forms of music popular ca 1600 in England was the broken consort. Unlike a consort of viols or recorders, where all instruments were of the same family, albeit of various sizes, a broken consort consists of instruments of various types, lutes, viols, violins, etc.
The program features music by William Lawes, Matthew Locke, Peter Phillips, Thomas Morley, and Christopher Simpson, among others. Rounding out the program of ensemble works are unaccompanied solo pieces for gamba, lute, and violin.
Featured artists are: Kathryn Sytsma and Todd Borgerding, viola da gamba; Rocky Mjos, lute; Seth Warner, lute; Michael Albert, violin and recorder; Timothy Burris, lute.
A sub-set of this ensemble gave a shorter version of this concert at our St Luke’s Early Music Series, which elicited this review in the Portland Press Herald:
Saturday evening, October 28, 2017
Concert for Two Tenors: Featuring music of Claudio Monteverdi and Heinrich Schütz
Featuring tenors Martin Lescault and Timothy Neill Johnson, harpsichordist Sean Fleming, and cellist Raffael Scheck.
Sunday afternoon, October 29, 2017
The art of arrangement: An early music tradition
Featuring Polish guitarist Petra Poláčková
Lutenists and guitarists–to say nothing of the players of keyboards and other instruments–have a long history of creating arrangements of works originally written for other instruments (or even other genres). J.S. Bach made transcriptions of works by Vivaldi and Marcello, among others. Bach’s Concerto for harpsichord BWV 974 is a transcription of Benedetto Marcello’s Oboe Concerto in d minor, for example. More relevant to today’s program is Bach’s Suite in A major, BWV 1025, for violin and harpsichord, which is an arrangement of the solo Lute Sonata in A major, SC 47, by Silvius Leopold Weiss. Robert de Visée, lutenist at the court of Louis XIV, made numerous arrangements for lute or theorbo of operatic airs, vaudevilles, noëls and so on, and he was far from alone in that practice. Today’s program by Petra Poláčková brings that practice to life, including transcriptions of works by Silvius Leopold Weiss and J.S. Bach for her early 19th-century guitar. Works from Bardenklänge by Johann Kaspar Mertz round out the program.
Here is a link to a live concert performance of the Bach Ciaccona, which will be on the program–performed on an early 19th-century guitar:
• How you can help
The Early Music Festival is self-financing. Though the Portland Conservatory of Music provides generous assistance in the form of the performing space and administrative support, all other costs–including the fees of the artists–must be covered by donations and ticket sales.
If you donate via PayPal on the PCM website, please send a follow-up e-mail to: email@example.com, earmarked for the Portland Early Music Festival. If you send a check to the Portland Conservatory (202 Woodford Street, Portland, Maine 04103), please mention the Portland Early Music Festival in the ‘memo space’.
The Portland Conservatory of Music is proud to be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit community music school. We thank you for your support.