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CONTACT: Kathleen Fay, Executive Director
617-661-1812 |

MEDIA ALERT: Boston Early Music Festival presents Apollo’s Fire, the Cleveland Baroque Orchestra, in concert with Philippe Jaroussky, countertenor

ARTIST: Apollo’s Fire, the Cleveland Baroque Orchestra
Jeannette Sorrell, conductor & harpsichord
Philippe Jaroussky, countertenor
WHEN: Saturday, November 5, 2011 at 8pm
Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury Street, Boston, MA

Handel and Vivaldi: Fireworks

Vivaldi: Allegro from Concerto Grosso in D,

                    after Concerto RV 511 (arr. Sorrell)

Handel:   “Agitato da fiere tempeste,” from ORESTE

Handel:   Orfeo’s recit & aria "Ho perso il caro ben"

                    from IL PARNASSO IN FESTA

Vivaldi: Concerto in A minor for Two Violins,

                    Op. 3 no. 8, RV 522

                    Olivier Brault & Johanna Novom, violin

Handel:   "Se potessero i sospir miei," from IMENEO

Handel:   "Con l'ali di costanza,” from ARIODANTE

Handel:   Prelude in A major, for solo harpsichord

                    (arr. Sorrell)

Handel:   Chaconne from Terpsichore (Il pastor fido),

                    HWV 8c

Vivaldi: "Se mai senti spirati sul volto,"

                    from CATONE IN UTICA

Vivaldi: Concerto Grosso “La Follia” (Madness),

                    after Sonata XII (arr. Sorrell)

                    Olivier Brault & Johanna Novom, violin

Vivaldi: "Vedro con mio dilettto," from GIUSTINO

Vivaldi: “Frà le procelle,” from TITO MANLIO

TICKETS: Tickets priced at $19, $38, $49, and $66 each and can be purchased at WWW.BEMF.ORG and 617-661-1812; a $5 discount for students, seniors, and groups is offered by calling 617-661-1812. Subscription discounts of 10% are available with the purchase of three or more programs.


Superstar countertenor Philippe Jaroussky makes a triumphant return to Boston following his breathtaking performance in the June 2011 BEMF centerpiece opera, Niobe, Regina di Tebe! He appears in concert with Apollo’s Fire, the Cleveland Baroque Orchestra under the direction of Jeannette Sorrell. Apollo’s Fire has been consistently recognized for their “expressive subtlety, exuberance, and passion” (Classical Music Magazine) in critically acclaimed performances across North America and Europe.

The exceptional musicians of Apollo’s Fire will present a program which seeks to explore the full dramatic range of Handel and Vivaldi arias for the virtuoso castrato singers of the 18th century. Truly the pop singers of their time, castrati were featured in all the great operas of this age, earning outlandish salaries and fevered devotion from audiences. Jaroussky’s refined and silken voice is uniquely suited to interpreting this dynamic program which joins familiar arias from Handel with rarely-heard gems by Vivaldi. Apollo’s Fire will round out the program with a selection of fiery Vivaldi concertos which showcase Vivaldi’s beloved instrumental music.


Philippe Jaroussky, born in 1978, has already established himself as one of the great vocal artists on the international scene. His awards include “Lyric Artist of the Year”–the French equivalent of a Grammy award–and “Best Singer of the Year” at the Echo Classic Awards in Munich. Since 2005, he has been in demand at the most prestigious concert halls of Europe, including the Théâtre des Champs Elysées, London’s Wigmore Hall and the Barbican Centre, the Vienna Konzerthaus, the Teatro Real in Madrid, the Berlin Staatsoper, and the Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels. He has twice given recitals at Carnegie Hall. Jaroussky has collaborated with such conductors and ensembles as William Christie (Les Arts Florissants), Mark Minkowski (Les Musiciens du Louvre), Christina Pluhar (L’Arpeggiata), and Jean-Chistophe Spinosi (Ensemble Matheus). His CD recording of Vivaldi opera arias, “Heroes,” was named “Disque d’Or” in France and won a Gramophone award in the UK. His other recordings include discs of Monteverdi, Vivaldi, and French mélodie, on EMI and Virgin Classics. Mr. Jaroussky made his North American stage début in June, 2011 with the Boston Early Music Festival.

Jeannette Sorrell is recognized internationally as a leading voice among early music conductors. One of the youngest students ever accepted to the prestigious conducting courses of the Aspen and the Tanglewood Music Festivals, she studied conducting under Leonard Bernstein and Roger Norrington. After harpsichord studies with Gustav Leonhardt in Amsterdam, she won first prize in two international harpsichord competitions. Since founding Apollo’s Fire in 1992, Sorrell has attracted national attention and awards for creative programming. She is twice the recipient of the prestigious “American Masterpieces” grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, for the research in early American repertoire. Her guest engagements as conductor and solo keyboard artist include the Handel and Haydn Society, the Opera Theatre of St. Louis with the St. Louis Symphony, the Grand Rapids Symphony, and the Cleveland Orchestra. She holds awards from the Cambridge Society for Early Music and the American Musicological Society, as well as an honorary doctorate from Case Western University.

Named for the classical god of music and the sun, Apollo’s Fire was founded in 1992 by award-winning harpsichordist and conductor Jeannette Sorrell. The ensemble is a collection of creative artists who share Sorrell’s passion for the Baroque ideals of rhetoric and emotional communication (Affekt) in music. Since its sold-out London début at Wigmore Hall in 2010, Apollo’s Fire is credited with “forging a vibrant, life-affirming approach to the re-making of early music,” (BBC Magazine). The ensemble’s appearances include the Aspen Music Festival, the Boston Early Music Festival series, the Library of Congress, and concerts this year in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Toronto, Boston, Madrid, Lisbon and Bordeaux. Apollo’s Fire has released 17 commercial CD’s and currently records for British label AVIE. Since the ensemble’s introduction into the European CD market last summer, the recordings have won rave reviews in the European press. At home in Cleveland, the ensemble enjoys one of the largest subscription audiences of any American Baroque orchestra. The group made its début with the Boston Early Music Festival in February, 2006 and will perform with an ensemble of 12 musicians.


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Recognized as the preeminent early music presenter and Baroque opera producer in North America, the Boston Early Music Festival has been credited with securing Boston’s reputation as “America’s early music capital” (The Boston Globe). Founded in 1981, the Boston Early Music Festival offers diverse programs and activities, including three Grammy-nominated opera recordings, an annual concert series that brings early music’s brightest stars to the Boston and New York concert stages, and a biennial week-long Festival and Exhibition recognized as the “world’s leading festival of early music” (The Times, London). The 17th Boston Early Music Festival is planned for June 9–16, 2013.

The 2011–2012 Boston Early Music Festival Concert Series is presented with support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, National Endowment for the Arts, ConstellationCenter, 99.5 All Classical, Harpsichord Clearing House, Zuckermann Harpsichords International, The Gregory E. Bulger Foundation, U. S. Trust/Bank of America Private Wealth Management, and GTC Law Group.

For more information, images, press tickets, or to schedule an interview, please contact Kathleen Fay at 617-661-1812 or email