Rembrandt Chamber Musicians’ ‘Holiday Baroque’ Concerts – Spectacular

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Beckoning with Bach, Handel, Marcello, and Corbet

December 1 and 3

December 1, 7 p.m., Chicago

December 3, 3 p.m., Evanston

Free admission for students and children at both concerts

Rembrandt Chamber Musicians, Chicago’s flagship ensemble covering the full spectrum of classical chamber music, will present a “Holiday Baroque” program December 1 and 3, 2023, that opens with a shimmering showpiece for soprano and trumpet: George Frideric Handel’s aria “Let the Bright Seraphim” in D Major from his oratorio “Samson,” HWV 57.

Antonio Vivaldi’s charming Trio Sonata RV 28 for lute, violin, and continuo engages the listener with its carefree opening movement, followed by a serene middle featuring the lute, and a dance-like finale.

Handel’s Gloria in B-flat, another soprano showpiece, is unusual for being a stand-alone section of the Mass and scored for a solo voice.

A contemporary of Vivaldi, Venetian musician Alessandro Marcello is best known for his Oboe Concerto in D Minor, which will be heard in an arrangement for piccolo.

English composer William Corbett’s Sonata No. 5 in E Major features the trumpet. Grove Music Online describes Corbett’s music as “characterized by an attractive turn of phrase, a melodic spontaneity and a strong rhythmic sense.”

John_Macfarlane

Flute and violin share top billing in J. S. Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 in D Major, BWV 1050, noted for its groundbreaking harpsichord solo.

Guest artists are Josefien Stoppelenburg; soprano; Jennifer Gunn, flute and piccolo; Ryan Berndt, trumpet; Brandon Acker, archlute; Stephen Alltop, harpsichord; and Eoin Andersen, violin.

Stoppelenburg is an internationally acclaimed Baroque music specialist. Gunn plays flute and piccolo with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Berndt has been hailed by Gramophone magazine as a “versatile, superb, and committed” artist.

Acker, a specialist in historical plucked instruments, was Musical America’s Young Artist of the Month for March 2023. Alltop has performed with many of today’s leading early-music proponents and conducts the Baroque Music Ensemble at Northwestern University’s Bienen School of Music. Andersen is former concertmaster of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. 

A wonderful concert

Rembrandt Chamber Musicians ensemble members performing in “Holiday Baroque” are John Macfarlane, assistant principal second violin of the Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra; Carol Cook, principal viola of the Lyric Opera Orchestra; and Calum Cook, principal cello of the Lyric Opera Orchestra.

Concert Dates and Locations

“‘Holiday Baroque” concerts are at 7 p.m. Friday, December 1, 2023, at Church of the Atonement, 5749 N. Kenmore Avenue, Chicago; and 3 p.m. Sunday, December 3, at Northwestern University’s Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road, Evanston.

Tickets and Information

General admission tickets for Holiday Baroque are $36. Students and children will be admitted free, but passes must be reserved by calling 872-395-1754.

Tickets can be purchased online at rembrandtchambermusicians.org or by phone at 872-395-1754. 

Both concerts will be followed by a free reception with the musicians and complimentary refreshments.

Rembrandt Chamber Musicians

Founded in 1990, Rembrandt Chamber Musicians is a Chicago-based ensemble featuring principal members of the Chicago Lyric Opera Orchestra. Rembrandt champions classical chamber music as an accessible, engaging, and deeply personal living art form by presenting world-class performances of well-known masterworks and hidden gems from the Baroque period to the present. The ensemble collaborates with renowned guest artists, commissions new works, and supports young musicians through an annual high school chamber music competition and educational outreach initiatives. Website: www.rembrandtchambermusicians.org 

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