SCMS presents Musica Pacifica
Rousing Baroque Folk and Dance Music from Scotland, Ireland, and England features in Musica Pacificas most popular program. Something for everyone! This program includes Musica Pacificas arrangements of traditional Irish and Scottish folk tunes, dance suites from the English theater, Jacobean masque music, trio sonatas by Scots Oswald and McGibbon, as well as works with a Scottish flavor by Matteis and Veracini, and Purcells famous "Three Parts upon a Ground." Dancing in the Isles has been reviewed as "little short of sensational ... astonishing ... breath-taking throughout. (Steven Ledbetter, The Boston Musical Intellegencer, June 13, 2015.)
Musica Pacifica has, since its founding in 1990, become widely recognized as one of Americas premier baroque ensembles, lauded for both the dazzling virtuosity and the warm expressiveness of its performances. Called the crème de la crème of the West Coast early music scene by Alte Musik Aktuell (Regensburg, Germany), these four highly accomplished musicians Judith Linsenberg (recorder), Elizabeth Blumenstock (baroque violin), and Charles Sherman (harpsichord) are genuine friends, who clearly relish the music and the time they spend together with their audiences. At home in the San Francisco Bay Area, these artists are masters of their repertoire who regularly perform with Philharmonia Baroque, American Bach Soloists, and other prominent early music ensembles across the country and around the world. Musica Pacifica combines this world-class musicianship with imaginative programming and a spirited performing style, bringing electricity, brilliance, and exuberant vitality to its performances of the intimate chamber music of the Baroque. The San Diego Reader described it this way: Musica Pacifica communicated the outer and inner life of this music with such panache that their playing produced an irresistible feeling of joy.
Such enthusiasm from both the press and the public has marked two decades of Musica Pacifica performances, and has won the ensemble an international reputation as early music specialists. Its programs are carefully crafted to showcase the charm, elegance, and diversity of 17th- and 18th-century music, with the core group frequently joined by world renowned guest artists in varying combinations of recorder, oboe, violins, cello/gamba, lute/guitar, harpsichord, and percussion. Over the years, Musica Pacifica has brought one inventive, beautifully performed program after another to some of the most prestigious concert series in the U.S., including Music Before 1800 and the Frick Collection (NY), the Getty Museum (Los Angeles), the Cleveland Art Museum, the Pittsburgh Renaissance and Baroque Society, the Seattle Early Music Guild, Early Music Now in Milwaukee, the Houston Early Music Society, the Los Angeles County Museum, the San Diego Early Music Society, and the Cambridge Early Music Society, among many others. The ensemble has been featured at the Berkeley Early Music Festival three times, and their first appearance there was cited in Early Music (UK) as "perhaps the standout of the entire festival." Musica Pacifica has also received international acclaim for its performances in Austria and Germany. Broadcast audiences have heard the ensemble on German National Radio, as well as on National Public Radios "Performance Today" and "Harmonia," and Minnesota Public Radio.
Musica Pacificas eight recordings including repertoire by J.S. Bach, Vivaldi, Alessandro Scarlatti, Marin Marais, Telemann, Francesco Mancini, as well as Baroque and traditional music from the British Isles have been lauded in the classical music press, garnering the highest ratings in classical CD magazines and repeatedly being chosen as CD of the Month by the early music journal Alte Musik Aktuell. The prestigious Gramophone Magazine (UK) called their most recent release, Dancing in the Isles, "one of the zestiest recordings of recent vintage. Fire Beneath My Fingers, was a featured recording on Minnesota Public Radio, and called one of the most exciting Baroque recordings Ive heard by the online Audiophile Audition. Their Telemann CD was described by Early Music America Magazine as "superbly elegantexemplifying the finest in historical performance today;" this disc went on to win the 2003 Chamber Music America/WQXR Record Award. Internationally, their Mancini recording was cited in 2000 as a "Noteworthy Disc" at the Antonio Vivaldi Awards for Italian Early Music in Venice. To have earned such honors, truly, in the words of Fanfare Magazine, this is playing to ravish the senses.
Online, Musica Pacifica may be heard on radio stations 1.fm, Last.fm, Celtic Radio, and Recorder-radio.com; and seen on youtube.com/MusicaPacificaSF. Their recordings are also available on ITunes and other online sites. Please visit their website: www.musicapacifica.org.
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