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SOLO BRILLIANCE IN SANTA ROSA SYMPHONY CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, February 17, 2024
Opera
OPERA GEMS IN COZY SEBASTOPOL THEATER
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Friday, February 9, 2024
Choral and Vocal
LUSTROUS VOCAL SOUND AT KUZMA'S SCHROEDER RECITAL
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Sunday, February 4, 2024
Symphony
HAYDEN'S SAXOPHONE CONCERTO AT SO CO PHIL CONCERT
by Ron Teplitz
Sunday, January 28, 2024
Chamber
SPIRITUAL STRING MUSIC IN BLACK OAK ENSEMBLE'S MARIN CONCERT
by Abby Wasserman
Sunday, January 28, 2024
Chamber
VIRTUOSIC HARP RECITAL AT SPRING LAKE VILLAGE SERIES
by Terry McNeill
Wednesday, January 24, 2024
Chamber
EMOTIONAL BLOCH PIECE HIGHLIGHTS PELED'S RAC RECITAL
by Peter Lert
Sunday, January 21, 2024
Chamber
OYSTER TRIO AT THE ROSE SIGNATURE SERIES
by Terry McNeill
Sunday, January 14, 2024
Chamber
CANTABILE CHARMS IN MIXED 222 GALLERY CONCERT
by Terry McNeill
Saturday, January 13, 2024
Choral and Vocal
A GRAND DIVA'S SHIMMERING AND PROVOCATIVE RECITAL IN WEILL HALL
by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Thursday, January 11, 2024
CHORAL AND VOCAL REVIEW
Sonoma Bach / Saturday, November 19, 2022
Bob Worth, conductor; Circa 1600; Barefoot All Stars; The Whole Noyse

Organist Phebe Craig

SONOMA BACH'S WORLD IN SCHROEDER HALL CONCERT

by Pamela Hicks Gailey
Saturday, November 19, 2022

Continuing the theme of “Bach’s World” and its very deep dive into the subject of how Bach came to be who he was, Sonoma Bach presented Nov. 19 a second concert of a variety of motets by the Leipzig Master, J. Christoph Bach, J. Michael Bach, old Johann Bach, and two of Sebastian’s Bach’s idols, Pachelbel and Buxtehude.

The works presented span the better part of a century of compositional development and provided insight into the musical journey the Bach family and their contemporaries made from the late Renaissance to and through the Baroque.

I was particularly moved by the texts of these selections, at once ancient and yet contemporary. They are religiously inspirational and philosophical, with familiar Bible extracts combined with standard liturgical texts. The great chorale melodies soar throughout, providing context and backbone from which the counterpoint blooms.

For this concert outstanding forces were assembled. Circa 1600 is a chamber ensemble of nineteen singers directed by Robert Worth and immersed in the study and performance of vocal music from the Renaissance and Baroque. They sing as one voice, with impeccable musicianship, blend and balance, and infectious energy. Several excellent uncredited solos decorated the proceedings as well.

Circa 1600 was joined by the illustrious continuo-organist Phebe Craig and two top-notch instrumental ensembles. The Whole Noyse is a preeminent Renaissance-Baroque instrumental ensemble based in the Bay Area. For this concert the audience was treated to performances on the sackbut (an early trombone), the cornetto (a woodwind with finger holes but a mouthpiece rather than a reed, so that it makes more of a trumpet or cornet-like sound), and the curtal (an early bassoon). Strings were provided by Barefoot All-Stars, a relatively new and wonderfully lively viol ensemble comprised of treble, alto, tenor and bass instruments, all held and played vertically.

The sound and the balance between instruments and voices was perfect in Schroeder Hall and the freedom and musical excitement that accompanies this level of performance was appreciated by loud applause from a nearly full house.