Boston Baroque Celebrates 50th Year
Performances of Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” Symphony No. 9, Handel’s Messiah, a New Year’s Celebration, Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons, and Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni will feature a star-studded roster of soloists including Susanna Phillips, Eric Owens, Tamara Mumford, Sidney Outlaw, Daniela Mack, Michelle Bradley, Nicholas Phan and Amanda Forsythe among others.
BOSTON, MA—Boston Baroque is delighted to celebrates its 50th Year with a season led by founding Music Director Martin Pearlman. Highlights of the season include a years-in-the-making return to Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” Symphony No. 9, the beloved holiday traditions of Handel’s Messiah and New Year’s Celebration, Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons and Handel’s Silete Venti, and Mozart’s dramatic opera Don Giovanni starring Sidney Outlaw in the titular role and Susanna Phillips as Donna Anna.
“This coming season of Boston Baroque’s 50th year will be big celebration with major milestones from our past,” says Founding Music Director Martin Pearlman, “including Beethoven’s Ninth and Mozart’s Don Giovanni, as well as some great music that we have not performed before. I look forward to bringing an exciting season to our in-person audiences, as well as to our growing online audiences around the world.”
“Even at 50 years, Boston Baroque continues to grow and expand,” says Executive Director Jennifer Ritvo Hughes. “The season features new repertoire (Biber’s Battalia among others), a new venue for our opera at the Cutler Majestic Theatre, the house debuts for Eric Owens, Michele Bradley, Roderick Williams, and Karim Sulayman, and our first-ever trip to Prague. Our new endeavors are grounded in our longtime commitment to this music—Boston Baroque gave the American period instrument premiere of Don Giovanni in 1986, and we’re delighted to return to it in our 50th year.”
THE 2023-2024 SEASON
Boston Baroque’s five-concert season will be presented in-person at GBH’s Calderwood Studio, New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall, Harvard University’s Sanders Theatre, and Emerson College’s Cutler Majestic Theatre, and will stream online to a worldwide audience on IDAGIO Concerts. Subscriptions are now on sale for the 2023-2024 Season, and single tickets will go on sale over the summer.
The season opens on October 13-15 with Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” Symphony No. 9 featuring soloists soprano Heidi Stober, mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack, tenor William Burden, and bass-baritone Eric Owens making his Boston Baroque debut. The world-renowned soloists are joined by Boston Baroque’s glorious chorus and orchestra, all led by Founding Music Director Martin Pearlman. The program will begin with Beethoven’s “Coriolan” Overture and “Elegiac Song.”
The season opener will bring the all-Beethoven program on tour to all three of our musical homes in Boston and our digital streaming home on IDAGIO. The October 13 performance will be held at Harvard University’s Sanders Theater; the October 14 performance will be held at GBH’s Calderwood Studio and streamed live on IDAGIO Concerts; and the October 15 performance will be held at NEC’s Jordan Hall.
Boston Baroque returns to its December holiday traditions of presenting Handel’s Messiah and a New Year’s Celebration Concert. Messiah will feature the return of soprano Amanda Forsythe and mezzo-soprano Tamara Mumford to Boston Baroque, while tenor Karim Sulayman and baritone Roderick Williams make their company debuts. Performances of Handel’s Messiah run December 2 at GBH’s Calderwood Studio, and December 3 at NEC’s Jordan Hall, with the December 2 performance streamed live on IDAGIO Concerts.
The New Year’s Celebration program will include Handel’s “Let the Bright Seraphim” and “Eternal Source of Light Devine” featuring Sonja Tengblad, soprano, and Justin Bland, trumpet, Bach’s Orchestral Suite No. 2, Biber’s Partita No. 1 and Battaglia, and Boyce’s Symphony No. 1. The program will be held at GBH’s Calderwood Studio on New Year’s Eve, where it will simultaneously stream live on IDAGIO Concerts, and at Sanders Theatre on New Year’s Day.
In March, Boston Baroque returns to Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons featuring GRAMMY®-nominated concertmaster Christina Day Martinson, alongside Handel’s Silete Venti with soprano Amanda Forsythe. The performances run March 15 at 8pm at GBH’s Calderwood Studio and streaming online on IDAGIO Concerts, and March 16 at 8pm at NEC’s Jordan Hall.
The season concludes with a new production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni, a return to the iconic opera that Boston Baroque gave the American period performance premiere of in 1986. The performances will take place on Friday, April 26 at 7:30pm, and Sunday, April 28 at 3pm, both held at the Cutler Majestic Theatre at Emerson College, a new venue for the organization. The Friday, April 26 performance will be streamed live on IDAGIO Concerts.
Conductor Martin Pearlman is joined by a star-studded cast in this modernized take on the adventures and demise of the titular character. Baritone Sidney Outlaw makes his role debut as Don Giovanni, joined by Metropolitan Opera star Susanna Phillips as Donna Anna. Michelle Bradley as Donna Elvira, and Patrick Carfizzi as Leporello make their Boston Baroque debuts. Returning to the Boston Baroque stage are Maya Kherani as Zerlina, David McFerrin as Masetto, Nick Phan as Don Ottavio, and Kevin Deas as the Commendatore.
Boston Baroque’s period string chamber ensemble, the X-tet, will present a three-concert series. The first program will be held on Friday, November 3 at 7:30pm and Sunday, November 5 at 3pm, and the second will be held on Friday, February 16 at 7:30pm and Saturday, February 17 at 7:30pm, both at the Lyman Estate in Waltham, MA, a Historic New England property. The final program will be held on Thursday, May 30 at 7:30pm at GBH’s Yawkey Theater.
Boston Baroque will also renew its partnership with the Lobkowicz Collections, one of Europe’s oldest and finest private collections of musical archives, culminating in an international patron tour to the Collections in Prague in March 2024. Boston Baroque will perform in the Lobkowicz Palace at Prague Castle during its weeklong residency, including performing the world-premiere of a musical work drawn from the Lobkowicz archives. Patrons can join Boston Baroque for this immersive week of musical performances, cultural outings, and more.
Boston Baroque will also continue to offer a season-long roster of virtual programming with leaders in the baroque and classical music fields, including in its partnership with the Lobkowicz Collections.
All streaming performances will be available to watch on-demand on IDAGIO Concerts for 30 days after their debuts.
BOSTON BAROQUE AT 50
Boston Baroque’s 50th Year continues a momentous milestone for North America’s first permanent Baroque orchestra. Boston Baroque was the first period instrument orchestra to get a major record deal, producing 26 commercial recordings over the last 50 years. The organization was the first period instrument orchestra to perform at Los Angeles’ Disney Hall, San Juan’s Casals Festival, and numerous festivals in the United States and abroad. Boston Baroque has given numerous American period-instrument premieres including Mozart’s The Magic Flute and Don Giovanni, and Boston’s first complete cycle of Monteverdi’s three surviving operas.
As the organization continues to grow, Boston Baroque is delighted to welcome assistant conductor Filippo Ciabatti to the expanded artistic team alongside Music Director Martin Pearlman and Director of Livestreams and Artistic Planning Matthew Principe. Filippo Ciabatti, a native of Florence, Italy, is the Director of Orchestral and Choral Programs at the Hopkins Center for the Arts, Dartmouth College, and the Artistic Director of the Upper Valley Baroque Ensemble. As a conductor, Mr. Ciabatti has collaborated with artists including Philadelphia Orchestra concertmaster David Kim, baritone Nathan Gunn, cellist Gabriel Cabezas, pianist Sally Pinkas, flutist Luciano Tristaino, and mandolinist Carlo Aonzo. Mr. Ciabatti holds advanced degrees in piano, choral conducting, and orchestral conducting from Italy and the United States.
Subscriptions are now on sale, beginning at $50, and feature four levels with in-person, virtual, and hybrid options available. In-person single tickets range from $25-$175, and livestream tickets begin at $9, and will be available for purchase over the summer. All can be purchased on Boston Baroque’s website at baroque.boston or by calling (617) 987-8600.