Subscriptions are now on sale for the eleventh season of Voices of Music. This is one of the Bay Area’s most intimate groups with an early music repertoire; but, thanks to its highly successful YouTube channel, it has become an ensemble with a global audience base. As in the past, the season will consist of three concerts; and San Francisco performances will take place on Saturday evenings at 8 p.m. Also as in the past, all of those performances will take place at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, located at 1111 O’Farrell Street, just west of the corner of Franklin Street. The specific offerings of each concert have been planned as follows:
December 2, Virtuoso Holiday Celebration: As in the past, the season will begin with a program of music appropriate for the Christmas season. This year will be distinguished by the Bay Area premiere performance of the recorder concerto in D minor by Domenico Natale Sarro. Johann Sebastian Bach will be represented by the sixth of his “Brandenburg” concertos (BWV 1051 in B-flat major), composed for two violas, two gambas, cello, violone, and harpsichord continuo. (Note that, excluding the harpsichord, the “sixth Brandenburg” has six solo parts, which may or may not have involved Bach playing with numbers!) The program will also include virtuoso concertos by Francesco Geminiani and Antonio Vivaldi.
January 20, An Evening in Paris: The full title of this program will be An Evening in Paris: Music for the King’s Chamber and the Parisian Salons. The selections will feature music that would have been heard in Versailles and/or Paris during the eighteenth century. Not all of the composers will be French. Georg Philipp Telemann will be included for his so-called “Paris” quartets, which were performed at those Parisian salons when he visited them in 1737. French composers on the program will include François Couperin and Marin Marais.
March 3, Leonardo da Vinci: A Musical Odyssey: This will be a fascinating departure from the usual approach to concert programming. The musical selections will hypothesize what Leonardo is likely to have heard in the cities in which he lived. There is no documentary evidence of Leonardo having been a composer, but Giorgio Vasari’s account of Leonard’s life calls him a virtuoso on the lira da braccio, one of the predecessors of the violin. Shira Kammen will join the Voices of Music players to perform on this instrument. In addition, the context of Leonardo’s life will be presented through narration by poet and story teller Lawrence Rosenwald.