About Boston Baroque

Boston Baroque turns 40!

According to Fanfare Magazine, Boston Baroque is widely regarded as “one of the world’s premier period-instrument bands.”  The Boston-based ensemble produces lively, emotionally charged, ground-breaking performances of Baroque and Classical works for today’s audiences–performed on instruments and using performance techniques that reflect the eras in which the music was composed.

Founded in 1973 by Music Director Martin Pearlman, and celebrating its 40th Anniversary in the 2013 – 2014 season, Boston Baroque’s orchestra is made up of some of the finest period-instrument players in the United States and they are frequently joined by the ensemble’s professional chorus and by world-class, top instrumental and vocal soloists from around the globe.  The ensemble presents an exciting annual subscription series consisting of five programs that are performed at New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall in Boston, Massachusetts or at Harvard University’s Sanders Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

In addition, in its 2012 – 2013 season, the ensemble inaugurated New Directions–a chamber music series mixing music of the baroque and modern eras played on both modern and period instruments.

Boston Baroque on Tour

Boston Baroque has performed at major music centers across the United States including Disney Hall in Los Angeles, New York’s Cathedral of St. John the Divine and festivals at Ravinia and Tanglewood.  In reviews of Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 at the New York’s Cathedral of St. John the Divine in 2010, the New York Times called the performance “vital and ebullient” and Opera News said that it was “an experience not soon to be forgotten.”  Boston Baroque was also the first period-instrument ensemble to be invited to participate at the famous Casals Festival in Puerto Rico and the ensemble made its European debut in 2003, performing Handel’s Messiah in the cities of Krakow and Warsaw in Poland.

Boston Baroque Recordings

Boston Baroque reaches an international audience with its twenty critically-acclaimed recordings on Telarc Records.  These recordings — of which Fanfare magazine wrote “each one is an incomparable gem”— are heard by millions on classical radio stations in North America and Europe.  In 2012, the orchestra became the first American orchestra to record with the UK audiophile label, Linn Records and their August release of The Creation received great critical acclaim.  In April 2013, the orchestra recorded Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass and Symphony No. 102 in B flat also for Linn Records and this release is scheduled to be available in the fall.  Finally, Boston Baroque’s recordings have received three Grammy Awards Nominations:  their 1992 release of Handel’s Messiah, their 1998 release of Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610 and their 2000 release of Bach’s Mass in B Minor.

Opera Britannia said of the orchestra’s 2010 release of Mozart Arias for Male Soprano, with soloist Michael Maniaci, “A disc of this importance should be a pre-requisite for all vocal connoisseurs and admirers of Mozart alike.”  Of the 2009 release of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, Gramophone wrote, “Boston Baroque’s playing combines supreme technical precision with unexpected psychological depth.”  The magazine also cited the Bach Orchestral Suites, which was picked as an Editor’s Choice, for their “virtuosity and élan.”  Fanfare called Boston Baroque’s recording of Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos, “A set to treasure . . . it belongs on the shelf of every lover of the Baroque.”

The premier recording of The Philosopher’s Stone was an Opera News Editor’s Choice and was shouted by Fanfare as “a valuable and utterly fascinating release” in which “the standard of performance . . . rises frequently to the level of the spectacular.”

Boston Baroque’s recording of Handel’s Messiah was Classic CD’s number one recommendation in its 1997 review of the crowded field of Messiah recordings and Billboard magazine called Gluck’s Iphigénie en Tauride “a superb production [and] cause for celebration . . . [the recording] takes pride of place among readings of Iphigénie en Tauride, if not among all Gluck operas on record.”

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