Boston Baroque Publishes Free Resource Library

Boston Baroque Publishes Free Online Resource Library

Digital archive of performance history for over 230 musical works features program notes written by Boston Baroque Music Director Martin Pearlman

BOSTON, MA—Boston Baroque is proud to introduce its Resource Library, a digital archive of performance sources, including program notes written by Boston Baroque Founder and Music Director Martin Pearlman, orchestration charts, and more, for free on its website. With more than 30 composers and 235 musical works, the digital resource is a significant contribution to the early music field.

“It is a great pleasure to share these program notes and charts online,” says Pearlman, who is internationally recognized as one of the leading interpreters of Baroque and Classical music on period and modern instruments. He created all the program notes and music charts available in the Resource Library. “I was pleasantly surprised to see the volume of this material that I wrote over a period of nearly 50 years, and I hope that it becomes a resource for interested music lovers, as well as for musicians and others in our field.”

A few highlights from the Resource Library include orchestration charts that give a breakdown of the acts, scenes, and pieces within a larger work, as well as information on the soloists and instruments included in each section; a complete performance history of Handel’s Messiah, performed by Boston Baroque 73 times since 1981; and a wealth of information on many well-known pieces, such as Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons, Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo, and J.S. Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos.

The Resource Library is organized by composer with easily navigable sub-sections. An example is a robust collection of Mozart’s operas, with notable inclusions being Don Giovanni, Così fan Tutte, The Marriage of Figaro, The Philosopher’s Stone, and The Magic Flute. The detailed program notes are accessible to music enthusiasts and novices alike.

The Resource Library is available online for free on Boston Baroque’s website at Organizations or individuals that are interested in publishing any of the content in Boston Baroque’s Resource Library for public consumption, such as in program books or online, should contact Boston Baroque directly for more details.


The six-time GRAMMY®-nominated Boston Baroque is the first permanent Baroque orchestra established in North America and, according to Fanfare Magazine, is widely regarded as “one of the world’s premier period-instrument bands.” The ensemble produces lively, emotionally charged, groundbreaking performances of Baroque and Classical works for today’s audiences performed on instruments and using performance techniques that reflect the eras in which the music was composed.

Founded in 1973 as “Banchetto Musicale” by Music Director Martin Pearlman, Boston Baroque’s orchestra is composed of some of the finest period-instrument players in the United States, and is frequently joined by the ensemble’s professional chorus and by world-class instrumental and vocal soloists from around the globe. The ensemble has performed at major music centers across the United States and performed recently in Poland for the 2015 Beethoven Festival, with sold-out performances of Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 in Warsaw and Handel’s Messiah in Katowice.

Boston Baroque reaches an international audience with its twenty-five acclaimed recordings. In 2012, the ensemble became the first American orchestra to record with the highly-regarded UK audiophile label Linn Records, and its release of The Creation received great critical acclaim. In April 2014, the orchestra recorded Monteverdi’s rarely performed opera, Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in patria, which was released on Linn Records and received two nominations at the 2016 GRAMMY® Awards.

Boston Baroque’s recordings have received six GRAMMY® Award Nominations: its 1992 release of Handel’s Messiah, 1998 release of Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610, 2000 release of Bach’s Mass in B Minor, 2015 release of Monteverdi’s Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in patria, and 2018 release of Biber’s The Mystery Sonatas.

High-res photos available for download online:


Boston Baroque founder, music director, and conductor Martin Pearlman is one of this country’s leading interpreters of Baroque and Classical music on period and modern instruments. In addition to Boston Baroque’s annual concert season, Mr. Pearlman tours in the United States and Europe and has produced twenty-six major recordings for Telarc and Linn Records. Mr. Pearlman’s completion and orchestration of music from Mozart’s Lo Sposo Deluso, his performing version of Purcell’s Comical History of Don Quixote, and his new orchestration of Cimarosa’s Il Maestro di Cappella were all premiered by Boston Baroque.

Highlights of his work include the complete Monteverdi opera cycle, with his own new performing editions of L’incoronazione di Poppea and Il ritorno d’Ulisse; the American premiere of Rameau’s Zoroastre; the Boston premiere of Rameau’s Pigmalion; the New England premieres of Gluck’s Iphigénie en Tauride and Alceste; and the Beethoven symphonies on period instruments. Mr. Pearlman is also known for his internationally acclaimed series of Handel operas including Agrippina, Alcina, Giulio Cesare, and Semele. He made his Kennedy Center debut with The Washington National Opera in Handel’s Semele and has guest conducted the National Arts Center Orchestra of Ottawa, Utah Opera, Opera Columbus, Boston Lyric Opera, Minnesota Orchestra, San Antonio Symphony and the New World Symphony. Mr. Pearlman is the only conductor from the early music field to have performed live on the internationally televised GRAMMY® Awards show.

Mr. Pearlman grew up in Oak Park, Illinois, where he received training in composition, violin, piano, and theory. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Cornell University, where he studied composition with Karel Husa and Robert Palmer. In 1967–1968, he studied harpsichord in Amsterdam with Gustav Leonhardt on a Fulbright Grant, and in 1971 he received his Master of Music in composition from Yale University, studying composition with Yehudi Wyner and harpsichord with Ralph Kirkpatrick. After moving to Boston, he performed widely as a solo harpsichordist in the U. S. and Europe, and in 1973 he founded the first American period-instrument orchestra, Banchetto Musicale, now called Boston Baroque.  He also served as Professor of Music in the Historical Performance department at Boston University’s School of Music.

Recent compositions by Martin Pearlman include a string quartet, piano works, his comic chamber opera Tristram Shandy, 3-act Finnegans Wake: an Operoar!, as well as The Creation According to Orpheus, for solo piano, harp, percussion and string orchestra. He has also composed music for three plays of Samuel Beckett, commissioned by and premiered at New York’s 92nd Street Y and performed at Harvard University in 2007.

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