Thursday, June 22, 2017

Princeton Festival Baroque Orchestra. June 21, 2017.

Miller Chapel, Princeton University.  General Admission ($35.)

Concerto di Viole (Concerto Grosso) in D major by Alessandro Stradella (1639-1682).
Concerto Grosso in B minor, HWV 330 by George Frideric Handel (1685-1759).
Da Tempeste from Giulio Cesare, HWV 17 by Handel.
Oboe and Violin Concerto in C minor, BWV 1060 by John Sebastian Bach (1685-1750).
“Concerto Polonois” in G major, TWV 43:G7 by Georg Philipp Telemann (1681-1767).
Symphony, Op. 5, No. 6 in G minor by Johann Adolph Hasse (1699-1783).

Our friends Vivien and David, who recently returned from a 10-day Bach Festival in Leipzig, decided to attend this concert also.  We had an early dinner at Triumph Brewing Company, which is right next to the Panera Bread on Nassau that we frequent.  It was good to catch up with these friends from our college days.

Today was the first time I visited Princeton Theological Seminary.  I have seen a few seminaries before, and I must say this is impressive.  The new library houses over 1 million books.  The concert took place at the Seminary’s chapel.  Around 150 people attended,

I took some time before the concert to go over several pieces that I could locate on YouTube.  That affirmed my theory that these compositions are probably interesting pieces to analyze, but not necessary emotionally appealing.  Requiring more of the left brain than the right, so to speak.

Members of the Princeton Festival Baroque Orchestra at the conclusion of the concert, inside Miller Chapel.

Here are more details:

Stradella.  Reynaldo Patifo, violin; Chiar Stauffer, violin; Anna Steinhoff, cello; Arash Noori, theorbo.  Several musicians played from the balcony.  There was a viola da Gamba in the ensemble.

Handel Concerto Grosso. The movements are Largo; Allegro; Aria; Largo; and Allegro.  Maria Romero violin; Alice Culin-Ellison, violin; Anna Steinhoff, cello.

Handel’s Giulio Cesare aria Da Tempeste.  Paloma Friedhoff Bello, soprano.  Her singing was enjoyable.  We saw the opera a while back, but I couldn’t quite place the song in the broader context.

Bach.  The movements are Allegro; Adagio; and Allegro.  Caroline Giassi, oboe; Juan Carlos Zamudio, violin.  Interestingly the original composition was lost, and this was reconstructed from a two-harpsichord transcription done by Bach himself.

Telemann.  The movements are Dolce, Allegro, and Allegro.  Scores I saw from the web has an extra movement “Largo” stuck between the two Allegros.  It was short, but was clearly there.

Hasse.  The movements are Allegro, Andante, and Allegro.

The scores that I looked over before the concert all had minimal parts.  Does interpretation of baroque music include a liberal use of (say) the oboe other than basso continuo?  There was a piece with two recorder players.

The instruments, especially the violins, seemed to go out of tune easily.  That may explain why the intonation often sounded off.  Wonder if there are inherent reasons why this is so, or simply that strings were wound improperly on the pegs?

Concert ended at around 8:45 pm.

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