December 15 + 18, 2022 at New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall
Press performance is Thursday, December 15 at 7:30 PM
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[Boston November 1, 2022] The Handel and Haydn Society will celebrate the joy of the holiday season with a collection of treasured Baroque works from Handel, Bach, and Zelenka, performed in H+H’s signature fresh and vibrant style. Led by acclaimed conductor Jonathan Cohen, founder and artistic director of Arcangelo, A Baroque Christmas will feature a pair of H+H premieres. World renowned soprano Robin Johannsen will join the orchestra on December 15 and 18 at New England Conservatory’s Jordan Hall.
A Baroque Christmas will feature works that honor the splendor of the holiday season. Soprano Robin Johannsen will quite literally silence turbulent instrumental forces with her opening words of Handel’s Silete Venti and then shine in the H+H premiere of Handel’s stunning and exuberant cantata Gloria for soprano and solo strings. The jubilant Concerto Grosso in F Major, Op. 3, No. 4 rounds out the trio of Handel works. Johannsen returns to face off with a solo trumpet in Bach’s exhilarating Cantata 51, Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen. The performance also includes the H+H premiere of Jan Zelenka’s Simphonie a 8 concertanti in A Minor. The lively and festive concerto exemplifies Zelenka’s style which earned him the respect of Bach.
“A true Baroque celebration, this is music as it was meant to be heard. The joy radiates from the stage with each work, expertly performed on period instruments in a way H+H is known for,” said David Snead, Philip and Marjorie Gerdine President and CEO of the Handel and Haydn Society. “The orchestra and Robin Johannsen will captivate the audience, breathing new life into these Baroque treasures and instilling the spirit of the holiday season.” Jonathan Cohen has forged a remarkable career as a conductor, cellist and keyboardist. Well known for his passion and commitment to chamber music Jonathan is equally at home in such diverse activities as baroque opera and the classical symphonic repertoire. He is Artistic Director of Arcangelo, Music Director of Les Violons du Roy, Artistic Director of Tetbury Festival and Artistic Partner of Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.
American soprano Robin Johannsen has established an international career both on the opera stage and in concert and has become known for her special affinity for the Baroque and Classical repertoires. Earning praise across Europe, Asia and North America, she has a close working relationship with René Jacobs and the Freiburger Barockorchester, and has also collaborated with conductors such as Marin Alsop, Raphaël Pichon, Jérémie Rhorer, and Christian Thielemann.
The Handel and Haydn Society Youth Choruses will also take part in this holiday celebration. The Concert Choir will perform Johann Vierdanck’s Christmas Concerto, “Ich verkundige euch grosse Freude,” under the direction of Jennifer Kane to start each concert. The H+H Youth Choruses inspire and unite young people ages 7-18 through transformative experiences with music in a welcoming and inclusive environment. Concert Choir is for advanced students in grades 6 through 9.
The 2022-23 Season
The Marriage of Figaro – November 17 + 18 at Symphony Hall
Handel Messiah – November 25 + 26 + 27 at Symphony Hall
A Baroque Christmas – December 15 + 18 at NEC Jordan Hall
Beethoven + Mozart – January 6 + 8 at Symphony Hall
Beethoven Eroica – January 20 + 22 at Symphony Hall
Bach Brandenburg Concertos – February 17 + 19 at NEC Jordan Hall + Sanders Theatre
Mozart + Mendelssohn – March 17 + 19 at NEC’s Jordan Hall
Bach Easter Oratorio – March 31 + April 2 at Symphony Hall
Crossing the Deep – June 1 + 4 at JFK Presidential Library and Museum
Subscription packages are also available and may be purchased by calling 617-266-3605 or visiting handelandhaydn.org.
About the Handel and Haydn Society
Boston’s Grammy-winning Handel and Haydn Society is dedicated to performing Baroque and Classical music with a freshness, a vitality, and a creativity that inspires all ages. H+H has been captivating audiences for 208 consecutive seasons (the most of any performing arts organization in the United States). Today, H+H’s Orchestra and Chorus delight more than 50,000 listeners annually with a nine-week subscription series at Boston Symphony Hall and other leading venues. Through the Karen S. and George D. Levy Education Program, H+H supports seven youth choirs of singers in grades 2-12 and provides thousands of complimentary tickets to students and communities throughout Boston, ensuring the joy of music is accessible to all. H+H’s numerous free community concerts include an annual commemoration of the original 1863 Emancipation Proclamation concert on December 31. H+H has released 16 CDs on the Coro label and has toured nationally and internationally. In all these ways, H+H fulfills its mission to inspire the intellect, touch the heart, elevate the soul, and connect us with our shared humanity through transformative experiences with Baroque and Classical music.