Scarcely a month after the seasoncelebrating the birth of Christ, Musica Angelica will take music lovers on ajourney to the end of Christ’s life when it presents Giovanni BattistaPergolesi’s Stabat Mater onSaturday, January 28 at 8 p.m. at AT&T Center Theatre in Los Angeles and onSunday, January 29 at 3 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Santa Monica.
Stabat Mater,which translates as “the Mother was standing,” is a musical depiction of thesuffering of the Virgin Mary as she witnesses her son’s death on the cross.But, despite the sorrowful nature of the work – “Does it not cause tears tofall?” asked a reviewer in 1778 – StabatMater soon became the most popular piece of sacred music ever written, saysMusica Angelica’s Music Director, Martin Haselböck.
“Pergolesi’searly death in his mid-20s did not stop the enormous success of this wonderfulpiece of vocal music,” continues Haselböck whose “affinity for early music and feeling for religious momentsin music” were hailed by Krone Wien after he conducted a performance last monthof Bach’s B-Minor Mass and Christmas Oratorio by Wiener Akademie.
“EvenBach wanted to have it performed at his church in Leipzig,” Haselböck relates. “Thetext of the Latin original, however, would have been unacceptable for Bach’sLutheran congregation, so Bach put the text of a German psalm under theoriginal music, changed a few notes, and so brought Pergolesi’s masterwork tohis native Germany.”
Joining Musica Angelica for the performances of Bach’sversion of the Stabat Mater aresoprano Dame Emma Kirkby, one of the world’s most celebrated early musicspecialists, and countertenor Daniel Taylor. The program will also includesongs and arias by J.S. Bach as well as arias and duets from George FridericHandel’s oratorio, Solomon and Theodora.
“Theextraordinary voices of Emma Kirkby and Daniel Taylor will shine in all theirbeauty,” Haselböck promises.
Musica Angelica is especiallygrateful for the generous sponsorship received from Classical KUSC and Haroldand Penny Ray in support of these concerts.Tickets for StabatMaterare reasonably priced, ranging from $29 to $49/person, with seniorsreceiving a 10% discount ($26 to $44) and students a special price of only $15with valid identification. Inaddition, members of KUSC and SCEMS receive $10 off single ticket prices. Subscription discounts are alsoavailable, with first time subscribers receiving 30% off their subscription. For more information, to purchase asubscription, or to order tickets, visit www.musicaangelica.orgor call 310.458.4504.
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