Latin American Baroque
Handel and the Voice
Queen Christina’s Musical Realm
Queen Christina of Sweden was a fascinating personality, on the one hand celebrated for her intellectual brilliance, and on the other vilified for her scandalous behavior. Educated like a prince rather than a princess, she excelled in philosophy, classical literature, math, religion, and languages. On reaching maturity, she made a series of radical decisions: first refusing to marry, then abdicating her throne, converting to Catholicism, and relinquishing her kingdom in Sweden for a life in Rome. A great lover of music, she supported musicians throughout her life. Repast performs music from her travels through Europe as well as from her Roman salons, including works by Corelli, Allessandro Scarlatti, Carlo Lonati, and Carolus Hacquart, with guest violinist Beth Wenstrom.
Savages in the Salons
Music from Paris in the Raging 1730s.
Inspired by the Parisian fascination with the exotic, Repast performs music by Rameau and his circle, including Telemann and Leclair, from the salons and theaters of High Baroque Paris. The program includes excerpts from Rameau’s opera, "The Gallant Savages," featuring scenes with North American Indians as well as Incas, Turks, and Persians.
Capriccio Stravagante examines the fascinating symbiosis of the Italian and German baroque styles. Beginning in northern Italy, Repast’s program works its way northward through Innsbruck, Salzburg, and Vienna, featuring music for violin, dulcian (the early bassoon), cello, and harpsichord. The program includes violin virtuoso Heinrich Biber’s F Major sonata and a modern “response” to Biber’s meditation: the Fratres of Arvo Pärt played here on baroque violin, baroque cello, and harpsichord.
Bach’s Goldberg Variations, arranged for chamber ensemble
Our own arrangement of Bach’s monumental harpsichord work, perhaps written to soothe an insomniac aristocrat. Performed here with flute, violin, cello, bassoon and harpsichord, Repast’s version of this late masterpiece keeps some variations in their original keyboard form, while arranging others for chamber ensemble. The canons and variations can be heard this way with different timbers, bringing out the vocal quality of the lines and allowing the listener to follow each individual voice distinctly.
Bach’s Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord
A program of four sonatas from Bach’s works for violin and obligato harpsichord, these works are masterpieces in the early sonata repertoire.
Bach’s Musical Offering
Repast puts J.S. Bach’s great contrupuntal work in context by creating a setting for the story of Bach’s visit to King Frederick and the musical challenge he faced on his arrival. This program begins with "Entry Music" by CPE Bach, who worked in Frederick’s court, while audience members settle in their seats. We then introduce the theme that King Frederick presented to Bach to prove his improvisational skills. Our performance of the complete Musical Offering, which Bach sent to Frederick after his return home, includes a movement by CPE Bach as a tribute to his father.
Bach’s Art of Fugue
Performed with string quartet and harpsichord, Repast explores Bach’s sojourn on the fugue that achieves both ingenius counterpoint and exquisite beauty.