by Mike Telin
A tenth anniversary is a big deal, and the Cleveland-based period instrument ensemble Les Délices will celebrate that milestone in style. “We’ve got a lot of things going on over the next two weeks,” Les Délices founder and artistic director Debra Nagy said during a telephone conversation.
The festivities will kick off on Saturday, September 29 in Herr Chapel at Plymouth Church in Shaker Heights with Fortepiano Day. During the daylong event, with fortepianist Sylvia Berry as their guide, audiences will discover the spirit and nuance of the instrument Mozart and Haydn would have used.
At 10:30 am Berry will present a lecture demo titled “History of the Piano.” At 11:45 am, an interactive session, “Scratch and Sniff,” will allow pre-college students to try out their Classical repertoire — Mozart, Clementi, C.P.E. Bach, and others — on both modern and period instruments.
Berry will host a pre-concert conversation titled “Who played the piano and why?” at 1:15 pm. “Sylvia will talk about the symbiotic relationship that still goes on today between teacher and student, composer and patron,” Nagy said. “She also has a lot of fantastic images to share with the audience.”
At 2:00 pm, Berry will demonstrate the full range of the instrument during a recital: “Four Masters of the Fortepiano.” The program will feature works by Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, and J.C. Bach. The day will wrap up at 3:15 pm with a post-concert conversation called “How does it work?” with fortepiano builder Dale Munschy.
“He’ll allow people to try the instrument, and he’ll take it apart and show people how it works. It should be a great day,” Nagy said. Click here for ticket information — the day is free for persons under 18.
The following week, Sylvia Berry will join Les Délices in four performances of Mozart in Paris – Part 2. The new program for oboe, fortepiano, and strings delves into Mozart’s time in the City of Light, featuring an 18th-century arrangement of Mozart’s Gran Partita, as well as works by Boccherini, Schobert, and Cambini — all accompanied by readings from Mozart’s humorous letters.
If you’ve ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes of a Les Délices program, you can find out during an LD@work open rehearsal on Wednesday, October 3 beginning at 6:30 pm in Herr Chapel in Plymouth Church in Shaker Heights.
The following evening, Thursday, October 4, the ensemble will inaugurate their Akron Concert Series with Mozart in Paris – Part 2 at 7:30 pm at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. Les Délices will take that program south on Friday, October 5 as part of the Early Music in Columbus series.
Mozart in Paris – Part 2 will be presented in Cleveland on Saturday, October 6 at 8:00 pm at Lakewood Congregational Church and on Sunday, October 7 at 4:00 pm in Herr Chapel at Plymouth Church. A pre-concert lecture begins at 3:00 pm.
“You’d think we’d all just collapse after that,” Nagy said, “but instead we’re going to Edwins Restaurant in Shaker Square on Sunday, October 7 at 5:30 pm for our 10th Anniversary Celebration and Benefit.”
The event will also celebrate Les Délices’ new CD of Baroque/jazz crossover music titled Songs Without Words. “We’ve given the album a subtitle, ‘Torch-songs Transformed,’ which we hope will make things a little clearer.”
Looking back over the last ten years, Nagy said that the growth of Les Délices has “far exceeded my expectations.”
Published on ClevelandClassical.com September 25, 2018.
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