Chicago’s burgeoning early-music scene

Posted on: March 3, 2017

“Chicago may not be quite up there with Boston or San Francisco as a prime center for early music performance,” writes John von Rhein in Wednesday’s (3/1) Chicago Tribune. “But at the rate early music instrumentalists and singers are moving to the city, creating performance opportunities and attracting donors, Chicago could well be those cities’ equal within the next couple of years. Both the Newberry Consort … and the Haymarket Opera Company … are presenting unusually interesting programs this weekend.” Haymarket will stage Alessandro Scarlatti’s oratorio Agar et Ismaele esiliati (1683) as part of Artistic Director Craig Trompeter’s “long-term plan to balance the 18th century operatic rarities … with smaller sacred works from 17th century Italy.… ‘Last year our audiences grew by 50 percent overall,’ he reports…. For its weekend performances, the Newberry Consort will offer … music Queen Christina heard … in the royal courts of Europe and during her residency in Rome.… Chicago author Sara Paretsky will … read excerpts from Christina’s letters … and anecdotes about the queen’s extraordinary life…. Singer Ellen Hargis … serves as co-artistic director of the Consort along with her husband, Newberry musician-in-residence David Douglass.”

Posted March 3, 2017