by Daniel Hathaway
ON THE WEB AND AIRWAVES THIS WEEKEND:
Apollo’s Fire artistic director Jeannette Sorrell guest conducts encore broadcasts of Handel’s Messiah with St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and Minnesota Choral Artists this weekend (previously recorded). Click here to watch the free performances on Saturday at 9 pm and Sunday at 3 pm Cleveland time. And tune in 30 minutes early for a discussion about how Handel’s recently revealed financial connection to the transatlantic slave trade impacts performances of his works today.
Friends of sometime Clevelanders David Acres and Judith (Overcash) Acres can tune in to the annual Christmas concert of their Charleston, S.C. chorus, The King’s Counterpoint, on Sunday at 3:00. The broadcast originates at Old St. Andrew’s Parish Church where Acres is currently director of music.
Locally, this weekend’s Cleveland Orchestra on the Radio from WCLV revisits the audio portion of Nicholas McGegan’s recent concert with the ensemble (Saturday at 8) and Franz Welser-Möst’s account of Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis (Sunday at 4).
The weekend ends a bit portentously with Wagner’s Götterdämmerung from the MET Opera on the eve of the Winter Solstice.
French composer, organist, and harpsichordist Louis Nicholas Clérambault was born on December 19, 1676 in Paris. Oberlin Baroque performed one of his cantatas, Orphée, as part of Early Music America’s 2017 Young Performers Festival at the Boston Early Music Festival. Watch here.
268 years later, American harpsichordist and conductor William Christie was born near Buffalo, He moved to France to found Les Arts Florissants, becoming one of the principal gurus of French Baroque music of our time. Here’s a performance of Charpentier’s Te Deum that Christie led at the Philharmonie de Paris in 2017.
Among the events cancelled early on because of the pandemic was the March 13 premiere performance of American composer George Frederick Bristow’s Mass in C (1884-1885) by Choral Arts Cleveland. Bristow was born on December 19 of 1825, and was the subject of conductor Brian Bailey’s doctoral dissertation. I had interviewed Bailey for a preview just days before COVID-19 cancellations began flooding in. Hopefully that event — and the preview — will be rescheduled after the all clear is sounded.
And on December 20, 1958, Steven Isserlis, British “cellist, author, musical explorer and general enthusiast,” as he describes himself, was born in London. He studied at Oberlin before launching both a distinguished career and an enchanting website that chronicles his wide-ranging interests. Isserlis last performed locally in February, 2013 with fellow alum Jeremy Denk on the Oberlin Artist Recital Series. Watch him here performing a children’s concert from his living room with violinist Amarins Wierdsma.