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Current Program Offerings


Virtuosi Italiani: The florid style of Monteverdi and Handel
Two of the greatest composers of the flamboyant Baroque style were Monteverdi and Handel. Though separated by a more than a century, both composers clearly reveled in writing for the soprano voice. Handel was greatly influenced by the Italian operatic tradition begun by Monteverdi and his contemporaries. This program includes Handel’s tour de force duet “No, di voi non vo fidarmi” (whose themes Handel later borrowed for several Messiah choruses) and the luscious final duet from Monteverdi’s opera L’incoronazione di Poppea.
Les Sirènes + continuo

L’Angoisse et L’Extase: The French Baroque
This program explores the passionate and sensual music of the French Baroque, with sacred and secular works by Couperin and Charpentier. The centerpiece of this program is François Couperin’s masterpiece for two sopranos, the Troisième Leçon de Ténèbres Pour le Mercredi Saint, an exquisite setting of the Lamentations of Jeremiah written in 1714 for the abbey of Longchamps. The program concludes with a scene from Charpentier’s delightful divertissement Les Plaisirs de Versailles, a courtly entertainment depicting a battle of wits between Music and Conversation.
Les Sirènes + continuo

Sirens and Shepherds: Soprano Duets from Two Shores
This program of charming and virtuosic vocal music explores the common ties between Italian and English Baroque music through two frequent subjects: the shepherds and nymphs of the pastoral world, and the wrathful gods of love. Our program contrasts the Italian and English takes on these themes, juxtaposing Italian masters Monteverdi, Strozzi, Steffani and Lotti with the two greats of the English Baroque, Purcell and Blow. The musical journey includes dramatic duets, mad songs, theater music, and elegant pastoral songs and duets.
Les Sirènes + continuo

Handel in Italia: Cantatas & Arias for two sopranos and Sonatas for two violins
Early in his career Handel spent a few years in Italy, where he was inspired by the dramatic and virtuosic style of Italian composers. He carried these Italian musical influences into his work back in Germany and then England. This program includes Arcadian duets and violin sonatas from both his Roman and London periods, as well as duets and arias from some of Handel's best-loved Italian operas and oratorios.
Les Sirènes + continuo and 2 violins


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last updated 10/1/13