Boston Weekly Cultural & Artistic Picks 10/29 – 11/04, 2012

Nélida Nassar  10.28.2012


The Picks of the Week: 

Jordi Savall at the Boston Early Music Festival
Karyn Levitt sings Eric Bentley’s Brecht-Eisler Song Book at the Goethe Institute

The Musical Europe Program: The Golden Age of the Consort Music for Viols (1500 – 1700) 

Jordi Savall, treble viol and direction
Philippe Pierlot, alto and bass viol
Sergi Casademunt, tenor viol
Guido Balestracci, bass viol
Xavier Puertas, violone
Xavier Diaz-Lattore, guitar and theorbo
Andrew Lawrance-King, arpa doppia
Luca Guglielmi, organ and harpsichord
Pedro Estevan, percussion

The Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF) in partnership with the Honorary Spanish Consulate will present one of the most multifariously gifted musicians of his generation, Jordi Savall and the acclaimed ensemble Hespèrion XXI in a program entitled music: The Golden Age of the Consort Music for Viols (1500 – 1700).

Hespèrion XXI’s mission is the study and interpretation of ancient music according to modern criteria, with an emphasis on the immense richness of the Hispanic and European musical repertoire before 1800. In its thirty years of existence, the group has, in collaboration with other outstanding performers, rescued numerous works and programs from oblivion, thus contributing to a major reappraisal of the fundamental aspects of the Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque repertoires.

For his BEMF concert, Mr. Savall, who has been dubbed the guardian of ancient music, will direct his ensemble of seven exceptional artists – playing different instruments and consorts of viol (treble viol, alto and bass viol, tenor viol) as well as the lute, the theorbo, the organ, the harpsichord, the arpa doppia and percussion – in a fascinating and expansive tour of two centuries of music.

Mr. Savall will weave links between the Elizabethans and their Italian contemporaries. Starting with the British (John Dowland, Orlando Gibbons, William Byrd), the musicians will then visit the Baroque French court (Michel Philidor), Venice, Spain (Antonio de Cabezón), and Germany (Samuel Scheidt), as well as Rome (Luigi Rossi), among other places. “The English proved true masters in composition for consorts of viols” (five violas da gamba and lute), Mr. Savall explained recently, adding “they left mighty works in terms of melody, counterpoint and harmony of great intensity despite the fragile sound of the instruments.”

Mr. Savall’s career as a concert performer, teacher, researcher and creator of new projects, both musical and cultural, make him one of the principal architects of the current re-evaluation of historical music. For over 30 years now, he has given a new life to neglected musical marvels: day after day, he reads, studies and interprets these pieces with his viol or as a conductor.

An indefatigable researcher, in the British Museum he has found old Italian and Spanish manuscripts ornamented by English musicians of the period, and some of this music will appear in the program he will be presenting for BEMF, which also includes “In Nomine” by Gibbons. The rhythms and themes presented in the course of the evening will reveal the immensely rich cross-fertilization that occurred among Spanish, English and Italian composers in the seventeenth century. “This is music of fire and air, full of joy and humor, and dancing… and it retains an element of popular music even in the most refined works.” The refinement of the viola da gamba is now no longer limited to the “happy few” who had honored it until recently.This program is sure to be a delight, an immersion in the timeless music of exceptional masters.

Friday, November 2, 2012 – 8.00 p.m.
New England Conservatory, Jordan Hall
290 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115

Karyn Levitt at the Goethe Institute

Kathyn Levitt a soprano from Concord is singing in a landmark concert Austrian composer Hanns Eisler’s songs in English versions translated by the world-renowned playwright, poet, translator, drama critic, editor, and cabaret singer, Eric Bentley.

Bentley who is 90 is the original English translator of Bertolt Brecht’s plays and poems.  He introduced the poet and playwright’s work to American stages in the 1940’s and 1950’s.  He has been working with Levitt on the program for more than a year.  Bentley has adapted the song texts (which are not lyrics by lyricists but poems by master poets) from their original German into English, unlocking Eisler’s starkly beautiful songs for American audiences.

Levitt will declaim the poems aloud prior to singing them, using Bentley’s English versions mainly from two collections: “The Brecht-Eisler Song Book” and “Eisler and the Poets.”

This is the premiere concert that will be followed by a reception.

Goethe Institute Saturday, November 3 – 8.00 p.m.
170 Beacon Street, Boston, MA
Tickets are $12.50 for students, $25 for general admission and $50 for patron. Purchase tickets online through EventBrite or at the door.


Monday, October 29, 2012 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 

Friday, November 2, 2012
Saturday, November 3, 2012
Sunday, November 4, 2012
Harvard Film Archives: Philippe Grandieux and Kidlat Tahimik in Person

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Museum of Fine Arts: High Ground and Best of the Boston LGBT Film Festival Program

Monday, October 29, 2012 to to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Kendall Square Cinema

Monday, October 29, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Coolidge Corner Theatre

Monday, October 29, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Goethe Institute at Coolidge Corner Theatre: Home for the Weekend: Was bleibt

Monday, October 29, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Fenway Regal Theatre

Friday, November 2, 2012
Goethe Institute: Fairy Tale Film Screening: The Wishing Table
German International School

Sunday, November 4, 2012
MIT Films

No films this week
Institute of Contemporary Art


Thursday, October 25, 2012 to Saturday, October 27, 2012
Boston Symphony Orchestra: Saariaho, Britten and Dvořák
Spanish conductor Juanjo Mena, chief conductor of the BBC Philharmonic

Thursday, November 1, 2012
Museum of Fine Arts: DJ Rich diMare and celebrates glamour, fashion and photography Mario Testino: In Your Face, chat about it with your friends over a cocktail, and strike a pose in the free photo booth!

Thursday, November 1, 2012
French Cultural Center:  Professor Yves Henry Concert of Chopin and Debussy

Monday, October 29, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Berklee College of Music: Various Events

Saturday, November 3, 2012
Berklee Performing Art Center: Aimee Mann

Monday, October 29, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012

Longy School of Music of Bard College

Friday, November 2. 2012
Saturday, November 3, 2012
Institute of Contemporary Art: Faye Driscoll’s You’re Me 

Monday, October 29, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
New England Conservatory: Dimitri Murrath

No events this week
Boston Philharmonic

Friday, November 2, 2012
Boston Early Music Festival: Hespèrion XXI Jordi Savall, director & treble viol

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Celebrity Series of Boston: Midori violin and Ozgür Aydin, piano

No events this week

Monday, October 29, 2012
Boston Landmark Orchestra: Radius Ensemble


Thursday, November1, 2012
 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Boston Ballet: Awake Only: Choreography: Jorma Elo
Rooster: Music: The Rolling Stones, Choreography: Christopher Bruce
The Second Detail: Music: Thom Willems, Choreography: William Forsythe

Sunday, November 4, 2012
Coolidge Corner: Swan Lake Ballet at the Movies

Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Flamenco Boston: Flamenco and Tapas
Bar Lola


Friday, November 2, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Boston Lyric Opera: Madama Butterfly

Resumes in December
Boston Baroque

Saturday, November 3, 2012
Goethe Institute: Eric Bentley’s Brecht-Eisler Song Book Sung by Karyn Levitt


Wednesday, October 31, 2012
American Repertory Theatre – OBERON: unMET: Opera for the 21st Century

Thursday, November 1, 2012
American Repertory Theatre – OBERON: Flores Los Muertos

Friday, November 2, 2012 and Sunday, November 4, 2012
American Repertory Theatre – OBERON: Opera Goes to Jail

Saturday, November 3, 2012
American Repertory Theatre – OBERON: The Donkey Show

Sunday, November 4, 2012
American Repertory Theatre – OBERON: Boom Boom’s Bow

Thursday, November 1, 2012
Coolidge Corner Theatre: Timon of Athens

Friday, November 2, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Lyric Stage Company of Boston: The Chosen

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Huntington Theatre Company
: Now or Later

Wednesday, October 31, 2012
 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Charles Mosesian Theatre: Race

Thursday, November 1, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Charles Playhouse: Blue Man Group

Wednesday, October 31, 2012
 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
BCA Plaza Theatre: Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson

Wednesday, October 31, 2012
 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
BCA Plaza Theatre: Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo

Friday, November 2, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
BCA Plaza Theatre: Maeterlinck’s The Death of Tintagiles

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Agganis Arena: Cirque du Soleil – Saltimbanco

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 to Sunday, November 4, 2012
Citi Performing Arts Center – Wang Center: Chicago the Musical

No shows this week
Fort Point Theatre Channel

No shows this week
Reagle Music Theatre of Greater Boston

 Originally Published in Berkshire Fine Arts

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