Musicians of the Old Post Road presents Delving Deeper, Episode Five: Behind the Curtain: Mining, Polishing, and Showcasing Lost Musical Gems
Saturday, February 4, 2023, 7:30 pm EST
Online only, available for 72 hours after premiere.
$10 Student, $35 individual, $70 family
For more information and tickets: www.oldpostroad.org or 781-466-6694
For over three decades, Musicians of the Old Post Road has delighted in their mission of uncovering, exploring, and performing the works of historically overlooked communities and individuals. Based in the Greater Boston area, the ensemble specializes in the period instrument performance of dynamic and diverse music from the Baroque to early Romantic eras, focusing on works that have been lost to audiences for centuries.
When the world shut down in March 2020, OPR, like many performing arts groups, looked for new and inventive ways to continue their work and connect with audiences. Delving Deeper, an online series of comprehensive explorations of select and historical musical topics, was born. In the four episodes already aired over the last few years, topics have included the evolutions of various instruments (violin, flute, and cello) and repertoire for those instruments, as well as an exploration of early music in New England historical landmarks in Sudbury, MA. All episodes include performances by a member or members of the ensemble, with a live Zoom Q+A with the musicians after the performance.
Back by popular demand, the fifth episode, airing February 4th, 2023 at 7:30 pm EST, is entitled “Behind the Curtain: Mining, Polishing, and Showcasing Lost Musical Gems,” and strives to answer audiences’ most frequently asked question: How does the ensemble actually find and revive these overlooked musical treasures?
The film takes viewers on a behind-the-scenes tour of the research, reconstruction, and editing processes, from discussion of the ensemble’s legacy of adding new voices to the canon of historical performance to an exploration of how research has changed over the years from brick-and-mortar adventures in libraries in a pre-digital world to research techniques of today. The presentation concludes with discussion about and a performance of a revived work by Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges, the first known Classical composer of African descent. In keeping with OPR’s long-standing commitment to uniting historical performance with historical architectural sites along the Old Post Road, the ensemble performs the work in the period-appropriate house museum, the Salisbury Mansion in Worcester, Massachusetts.
Worcester’s beautiful Salisbury Mansion is an ideal location for the performance of Joseph Bologna’s Quarter in G Major. The Chevalier was born in 1745, just one year before the first owner of the Mansion, Stephen Salisbury. The Mansion itself was built in 1772, and the quartet was composed during the 1770s. Stumpf (traverso) and Ryan (cello), are joined by Sarah Darling (violin) and Marcia Cassidy (viola) to bring the Chevalier’s quartet to life in this stunning historical venue. Viewers will also be treated to a tour of the Mansion, one of the finest house museums in the country.
Audiences can experience all this from the comfort of their homes on Saturday, February 4, 2023 at 7:30pm. Available online only and for 72 hours after its premiere. A live Zoom reception and Q & A session to follow. $10 students; $35 individual; $70 family. All Delving Deeper episodes are free for online and in-person season subscribers. For more information or to purchase tickets or subscriptions, please visit www.oldpostroad.org, or call 781.466.6694
This project is supported, in part, by a grant from The Fletcher Foundation. Musicians of the Old Post Road’s programs are also supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.
The remainder of OPR’s 2022-2023 season promises to be equally exciting; on March 11th and 12th, 2023, the ensemble will present Baroque Diva: A Tribute to Faustina Bordoni, featuring Grammy-nominated soprano Teresa Wakim performing dazzling arias and cantatas written for superstar Faustina Bordoni, whose vocal celebrity inspired a long list of works by such composers as J. A. Hasse, Leonardo Vinci, and Handel. To finish the season, on April 29th and 30th, 2023, Into the Light: Unearthed Treasures by Christoph Graupner will celebrate the unveiling of lost works by Graupner, an unsung German composer who was as legendary in his day as his contemporaries Bach and Telemann. The program will include some of his concertos, suites, and sonatas.
Musicians of the Old Post Road takes its name from its acclaimed concert series that brings period instrument performances of music of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries to beautiful historic buildings along New England’s fabled Old Post Road, the first thoroughfare to connect Boston and New York City in the late 17th century.
Winner of the 1998 Noah Greenberg Award from the American Musicological Society, Musicians of the Old Post Road has also received programming awards from Chamber Music America and the US-Mexico Fund for Culture. The ensemble has toured in Germany, Austria, and Mexico, and has appeared at festivals and on concert series in the US, including the Indianapolis Early Music Festival, the Boston Early Music Festival Concert Series, the Academy of Early Music (Ann Arbor), the Castle Hill Festival, the Artists Series at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, and the Connecticut Early Music Festival. The ensemble has held a residency at Dartmouth College and was featured on WCVB television’s “Chronicle” program and 99.5 All Classical radio’s “Live from Fraser” program.