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MEDIA ALERT: Legendary mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter makes her BEMF début in an enthralling program of Baroque songs

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ARTIST: Anne Sofie von Otter, mezzo-soprano (Sweden)

Thomas Dunford, theorbo (France)
Jonathan Cohen, harpsichord & organ (United Kingdom)
WHEN: Monday, November 9, 2015 at 8pm
Paine Hall at Harvard University, Oxford Street, Cambridge
PROGRAM:  Music of Dowland, Purcell, and a selection of Airs de cour
Purcell: Music for a While
Dowland: Come Again
Dowland: Can she excuse my wrongs
Dowland: The King of Denmark's Galliard (Instrumental)
Johnson: Have you seen the bright lily grow
Dowland: Fine knacks for ladies
Dowland: Lachrimae
Purcell: “What power art thou” from King Arthur
Purcell: “Fairest Isle” from King Arthur
Kapsperger: Tocata No. 6 (Instrumental)
Dalza: Calata ala spagnola (Instrumental)
Provenzale: Squarciato appena havea
Couperin: Les barricades mystérieuses (Instrumental)
Lambert: Ma bergère est tendre et fidèle
Visée: Chaconne in D minor (Instrumental)
Lambert: Vos mépris chaque jour
Charpentier: Chanson à danser: Celle qui fait mon tourment
Rameau: Les Sauvages (Instrumental)
Pärt: My heart's in the highlands

Songs by Paul Simon and others to be announced from the stage
TICKETS: Remaining tickets are priced at $70 each, and can be purchased at and 617-661-1812; a $5 discount for students, seniors, and groups is offered by calling 617-661-1812. Subscription discounts are available with the purchase of three or more programs on the 2015–2016 Season.

Long considered one of the finest singers of her generation, GRAMMY Award-winning mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter continues to thrill opera and concert audiences around the world with her ravishing tone and evocative interpretations. Her career boasts engagements with the world’s greatest opera companies and orchestras and an unrivaled discography displaying the vast breadth of her musical interests and her magnificent talent. She makes her long-anticipated BEMF début performing a breathtaking program of Baroque songs in an intimate ensemble with two virtuoso collaborators.

Accompanying Ms. von Otter will be Thomas Dunford, theorbo and Jonathan Cohen, harpsichord & organ. Hailed as the “Eric Clapton of the lute” by BBC Music Magazine, Mr. Dunford has an extensive and award-winning discography and is in demand around the globe, performing in recitals and as part of many of the world’s most accomplished ensembles. Mr. Cohen enjoys a remarkable career as a conductor, ‘cellist, and keyboardist with appearances at many of the finest concert halls and festivals in Europe and North America. He is the Founder and Artistic Director of Arcangelo, Associate Conductor of Les Arts Florissants, and Artistic Director of the Tetbury Festival.

These superlative musicians explore early Baroque masterpieces that ushered in a new era of music flush with gorgeous poetry and theatrical passion. The enduring power of music is demonstrated through the vocal delights of Dowland and Johnson, the grace and drama of Purcell, and the ironic juxtaposition of the profound and the profane in Neapolitan master Francesco Provenzale’s Squarciato appena havea. The second half of the program features a gorgeous selection from the French Baroque genres of airs de cour and airs serieux by Lambert and Charpentier and concludes with Avro Pärt’s setting of My heart’s in the highlands, which was featured in the Academy Award-winning film La grande bellezza. The program will also feature selected instrumental works as well as songs by Paul Simon.

GRAMMY Award-winning mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter is one of today's most recorded artists with an unrivalled discography built across a career spanning more than three decades at the very top of the profession. Her most recent recording, Douce France, received a GRAMMY Award in 2015 for Best Classical Solo Vocal Album. A busy concert schedule takes Anne Sofie to all corners of the globe where she appears with the world’s leading conductors and orchestras. And an ever-evolving repertoire has played a key role in sustaining Anne Sofie's international reputation as an operatic force. Considered the superlative Octavian (Der Rosenkavalier) of her generation, Anne Sofie von Otter has appeared in the role at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Bayerische Staatsoper, Opéra National de Paris, and the Metropolitan Opera. She recorded the role for DVD with the Wiener Staatsoper under the late Carlos Kleiber, and on CD with Bernard Haitink and the Staatskapelle Dresden.

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Recognized as the preeminent early music presenter and Baroque opera producer in North America, the Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF) has been credited with securing Boston’s reputation as “America’s early music capital” (The Boston Globe). Founded in 1981, BEMF offers diverse programs and activities, including one GRAMMY Award-winning and three GRAMMY Award-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 19th Boston Early Music Festival will take place from June 11–18, 2017, and will feature fully staged performances of André Campra’s Le Carnaval de Venise as the Centerpiece Opera. BEMF’s Artistic Leadership includes Artistic Directors Paul O’Dette and Stephen Stubbs, Opera Director Gilbert Blin, and Orchestra Director Robert Mealy.

The 2015–2016 Boston Early Music Festival Concert Series is presented with support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, National Endowment for the Arts, ConstellationCenter, WGBH Radio Boston, Harpsichord Clearing House, Zuckermann Harpsichords International, and The Gregory E. Bulger Foundation.

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