Lectures and Symposia

2019 Festival | June 9–16, 2019

Lectures and Symposia


Wednesday, June 12 at 9am

The College Club of Boston

Planned Giving & BEMF’s Orpheus Society
For almost 40 years, BEMF has thrilled audiences with bold and groundbreaking performances. A bequest in your estate plan, assignment of retirement or insurance benefits, or a charitable trust can all be strategies to help secure BEMF’s future and keep the music playing. BEMF Chairman Bernice K. Chen and Executive Director Kathleen Fay will welcome current and prospective members of BEMF’s Orpheus Society, and Estate Planning attorney David W. Adams will offer a practical seminar on estate planning and answer your questions. Presented with pro bono support from Lawyers Clearinghouse and Pathway Law LLC. A continental breakfast will be served.


Thursday, June 13 at 9am

Wilbur/Colonial Ballroom, Courtyard Marriott Boston Downtown

Session One: 9am–10:15am
Envisioning your career: An interactive workshop

Session Two: 10:30am–11:45am
What makes a great colleague?

Oboist Debra Nagy is one of the leading artists on the American early music scene. She has developed an enviable artistic and administrative skill set that complements her broad experience as a collaborative artist, teacher, and mentor. Adamant about the fact that success is self-defined, Nagy will guide attendees through a series of visioning exercises in the interactive workshop, Envisioning your career. The second session, What makes a great colleague?, will attempt to answer this all-important question in both general and specific terms—taking the mystery out of the thing that every employer says they’re looking for.


Thursday, June 13 at 12:30pm

Wilbur/Colonial Ballroom, Courtyard Marriott Boston Downtown

Session One: 12:30pm–2pm
My Life’s Journey with the Lirone

Session Two: 2:30pm–4pm
An introduction to www.lirone.org

Legendary virtuoso Erin Headley relates her fascinating life journey with the lirone, that otherworldly and “most harmonious of bowed instruments.” In 1975, the chance discovery of a Vatican manuscript drew her into a vast and mysterious labyrinth of Italian culture spanning 1450 to 1700. In the first half of this two-part multimedia lecture-demonstration, Headley shows how the unique sound of the lirone was eminently suitable for lamentation and spiritual enlightenment. In the second half, she demonstrates her new website dedicated to sharing the explosion of artistic creativity inspired by the lirone in a poignant and fully immersive experience.


Friday, June 14 at 10am

Emmanuel Church Parish Hall

Comic Italian dancing in the time of Handel and Rameau
French dancers may have been renowned across Europe for their refinement and elegance, but by the fourth decade of the 18th century they were receiving serious competition from the athletic Italian “grotteschi,” who travelled Europe and the British Isles performing comic character dances and pantomimes. In this lecture-demonstration with musicologist Rebecca Harris-Warrick and dancer Hubert Hazebroucq, learn about the international theatrical circuits in which these dancers made their impact, hear the surprising music to which they danced, and see reconstructions of the virtuosic comic art cultivated by French and Italian dancers alike. Featuring dancer Gloria Giordano and members of the BEMF Orchestra.


Friday, June 14 at 12:30pm

French Cultural Center

Operatic Arias from Lully to Gluck: Singing, Style, Repertoire, and Sources
Benoît Dratwicki, Centre de musique baroque de Versailles Artistic Director, shares some of the editorial and scientific work behind the CmbV’s new edition of Operatic Arias by Lully, Rameau, and Gluck. Explore performance practices, style, repertoire, and sources in this fascinating lecture-demonstration featuring performances of select arias.


Saturday, June 15 at 10am

Wilbur/Colonial Ballroom, Courtyard Marriott Boston Downtown

Producing and Performing Agostino Steffani’s Orlando generoso
Join us for an engaging conversation about the evolution of BEMF’s North American premiere production of Steffani’s Orlando. Preeminent Steffani scholar Colin Timms moderates a panel of specialists—including Paul O’Dette and Stephen Stubbs, Musical Directors; Gilbert Blin, Stage Director and Set Designer; Robert Mealy, Concertmaster; Melinda Sullivan, Dance Director; Marie-Nathalie Lacoursière, Choreographer; and Ellen T. Harris, Class of 1949 Professor Emeritus at MIT—as they explore the meticulous research that has been undertaken to bring this operatic masterpiece to the stage.