13 June 2017

A Baroque meet

Two of all things: two baroque concerts this weekend; AdHoc Baroque combining with Limestone Consort for one. This was a concert of the meeting of AdHoc and Limestone at All Saints, although there's a certain degree of Venn diagram overlap between these two. I'm sure I've heard at least one of the singers, Greta or Maartje, performing with Limestone Consort, and cellist Clara is common to the two groups and their programs pretty much overlap in period. This was a nicely mixed concert with varied combinations of performers, one or two or no singers, one or two violins, double bass and viola or not. And introductions were also varied, by Limestone's Lauren or AdHoc's Peter. The works were Purcell, two Telemann church cantatas, the Swedish composer Roman, Geminiani and Hasse. They were mostly religious works, instructing the congregation to stifle their eagerness to indulge in a spiritual life, or to shake off darkness and enjoy the light of the peace of the Lord in a harmonious world. Sounds good. We heard of connections, of Geminiani to Avison, of Roman to Handel and Bach's brother, of Hasse to a young visiting Mozart. It must have been a vibrant period of music. We heard of Telemann's financial successes and his readiness to adjust to his consumers (as we would envision it these days) and a hint at an unreadiness to stifle his eagerness and of working for the church or the big kahuna, Emperor Frederick the Great. Notes would have russled in that court. And we heard the music, jigs and aires and minuets, larghettos and allegros and recitatives and pomposi, and Salve Reginae and benedictiones. I loved the voices, especially in harmony; I was physically close to the viola for once and came to better understand its responsive role; I followed the bass and cello and their similar parts and bowings; I drifted with the loud but less assertive organ tones; I followed the violins, in harmony, or Lauren's leading melodic role. The playing was a pleasure and the music was delightful. Two makes one, when AdHoc met Limestone.

AdHoc Baroque met Limestone Consort at All Saints, Ainslie. Performers were Peter Young (keyboard), Greta Claringbould (soprano), Maartje Sevenster (alto), Lauren Davis and Matthew Witney (violins), Michelle Higgs (viola), Clara Teniswood (cello) and Kyle Daniel (bass).

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