As part of the series of jury concerts taking place over the week of the Boston Bach International Organ Competition, jury member Martin Schmeding of Leipzig plays the annual Labor Day concert at First Lutheran Church, a program of music by Bach, Bruhns, Frescobaldi, Grigny, Krebs, Medek, Mendelssohn, van Noordt, Scheidemann, and Steigleder.
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The inaugural Boston Bach International Organ Competition takes place September 2-9 and is open to emerging artists of any nationality who have completed their schooling and are between the ages of 26 and 37. Sixteen contestants will arrive during the last week of August to prepare for the three rounds of the competition. The BBIOC is quadrennial like its Leipzig counterpart, and is intended to
- promote further artistic development of players already engaged in professional careers,
- increase the general public’s awareness of the breadth and scope of Bach’s organ music; and
- showcase Boston as a leading center of historically informed organ building and performance practice, and home to many internationally prominent organists.
The jury consists of Arvid Gast (Lübeck), Chair; James David Christie (Boston-Oberlin), Christian Lane (Boston-McGill), Hatsumi Miura (Yokohama-Ferris), Christa Rakich (Hartford), Martin Schmeding (Leipzig), and Carole Terry (Seattle). Competition rounds take place in order at Old West Church, Church of the Advent, and First Lutheran Church. Jury concerts will be held in order at First Lutheran Church, King’s Chapel, Harvard Memorial Church, Trinity Church, and the Church of the Advent. Arvid Gast plays a Sunday afternoon concert out in Worcester at St. Joseph’s Chapel, Holy Cross College, and a winners’ concert will cap the week at First Lutheran later that evening.
Virtuosity Embossed with Grace: Music from 18th-century France
« A musician no longer arrives in France without a sonata or a cantata in his pocket. »
Thus the Mercure of November 1713 reported on the Italianate vogue that was sweeping away Paris at the beginning of the 18th century. We are in the late reign of Louis XIV, whose repeated absences during Versailles’ entertainments had prompted a migration of the courtiers out of the palace. As Georgia Cowart observes, freed from the adulatory disguise they had to wear in front of the king, a transformation in the type of entertainment they were consuming, as well as their taste began to take place. The infiltration of Italian gusto into the French musical scene, if welcomed by ardent defenders and patrons, was not totally devoid of chauvinistic criticism. The solution? Imprint the French gracefulness in Italian forms. Today’s program will present two of these cosmopolitan works: “La Piémontoise” from François Couperin’s monumental collection Les Nations; and “Pyrame et Thisbé,” a cantata by Michel Pignolet de Montéclair that, according to its composer, is both epic and dramatic.
Part of EMA’s 2018 Young Performers Festival at the Bloomington Early Music Festival
This concert will be livestreamed via Facebook Live.