Press Release


Boston Early Music Festival presents the Pacific Baroque Orchestra and soprano Karina Gauvin in a program of music from 18th-century
St. Petersburg – Sunday, October 27 in Boston

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ARTIST:Pacific Baroque Orchestra (Canada)
Alexander Weimann, Music Director
Karina Gauvin, soprano
WHEN:Sunday, October 27, 2019 at 4pm
Emmanuel Church, 15 Newbury Street, Boston, MA

Russian White Nights: Opera Arias from 18th-century St. Petersburg

Yevstengniy Ipatievich Fomin: Overture from The Coachmen
Dmitri Stepanovich Bortniansky: Two arias from Alcide
Domenico dall’Oglio: Sinfonia Cossaca
Johann Adolph Hasse: Sinfonia from La Clemenza di Tito
Maxim Sozontovich Berezovsky: Two arias from Demofoonte
Bortniansky: Overture and Air from Le Faucon
Giovanni Paisiello: Three Divertimenti
Christoph Willibald Gluck: Selections from Armide

TICKETS:Tickets are priced at $25, $45, $55, and $75 each, and can be purchased at and 617-661-1812; a $5 discount for students, seniors, and groups is available by calling 617-661-1812. Subscription discounts are available with the purchase of three or more programs on the 2019-2020 Season.

At the dawn of the 18th century, Tsar Peter the Great presided over Russia’s political transformation into one of the great European powers, as well as a cultural revolution of social modernization. French and German influences would ensure the court in St. Petersburg adopted a much more cosmopolitan style, which extended to an avid patronage of the arts, and opera in particular. Tsar Peter was famous for his love of music, singing in the choir of his court chapel, and visiting the homes of his court singers. His successors, the Empresses Anna, Elizaveta, and Catherine II, continued to cultivate cosmopolitan musical tastes, building a musical community of Russian, Ukranian, German, and Italian musicians.

The court of eighteenth-century Russia has a vivid history of excellent music and musicianship by both native and international composers and performers. Join one of the world’s leading Baroque opera specialists and a frequent star of BEMF operas, Karina Gauvin, for a captivating survey of the diverse cultural wealth of the Russian Baroque, with harpsichord virtuoso Alexander Weimann leading Vancouver’s exciting Pacific Baroque Orchestra in their BEMF début.

There will be a pre-concert talk at 3pm by Pacific Baroque Orchestra Music Director Alexander Weimann.

The Pacific Baroque Orchestra (PBO) is recognized as one of Canada’s most exciting and innovative ensembles, bringing the music of the past up to date by performing with cutting-edge style and enthusiasm. Formed in 1990, the orchestra quickly established itself as a force in Vancouver’s burgeoning music scene with the ongoing support of Early Music Vancouver. In 2009, the ensemble welcomed Alexander Weimann as Artistic Director. His imaginative programming and expert leadership have drawn in many new concertgoers, and his creativity and engaging musicianship have carved out a unique and vital place in the cultural landscape of Vancouver. PBO regularly joins forces with internationally celebrated Canadian guest artists, providing performance opportunities for Canadian musicians while exposing West Coast audiences to a spectacular variety of talent. The Orchestra has also toured BC, the northern United States and across Canada as far as the East Coast.

Alexander Weimann is one of the most sought-after ensemble directors, soloists, and chamber music partners of his generation. After traveling the world with ensembles like Tragicomedia, and as a frequent guest with Cantus Cölln, the Freiburger Barockorchester, Gesualdo Consort, and Tafelmusik, he now focuses on his activities as conductor of the Pacific Baroque Orchestra in Vancouver, music director of the Seattle Baroque Orchestra, and regular guest conductor of ensembles including the Victoria Symphony, Symphony Nova Scotia, Arion Baroque Orchestra in Montreal and the Portland Baroque Orchestra. He has also conducted several acclaimed opera productions at the Amherst Early Music Festival. He presents master classes in harpsichord and historical performance practice at institutions such as Lunds University in Malmö, the Bremen Musikhochschule, The University of California in Berkeley, Dartmouth College, McGill University, and Université de Montréal. He now teaches at the University of British Columbia and directs the Baroque Orchestra Mentorship Program there.

Recognized for her work in the Baroque repertoire, Canadian soprano Karina Gauvin also sings Mahler, Bach, Beethoven, Britten, and the music of the late 20th and 21st centuries with equal success. Ms. Gauvin has sung with the world’s greatest symphony orchestras, including the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, San Francisco Symphony, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, and Rotterdam Philharmonic, as well as Baroque orchestras such as Les Talens Lyriques, the Venice Baroque Orchestra, Accademia Bizantina, Il Complesso Barocco, the Akademie Für Alte Musik Berlin, the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, and Les Violons du Roy. Notable opera successes include Vitellia in Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées; Vénus in Rameau’s Dardanus with Opéra National de Bordeaux; L’Eternità/Giunone in La Calisto with the Bayerische Staatsoper; Armida in Handel’s Rinaldo at the Glyndbourne Festival; the title role of Handel’s Alcina with Les Talens Lyriques; and Ariadne in Georg Conradi’s Die Schöne und getreue Ariadne for the Boston Early Music Festival. Her recordings with BEMF have earned her three GRAMMY nominations.

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BEMF’s 2019–2020 Season Press Release:

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 four 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 21st Boston Early Music Festival – themed A Celebration of Women in the Arts – will take place from June 6–13, 2021, and feature the fully staged North American premiere of Henry Demarest’s Circé. BEMF’s Artistic Leadership includes Artistic Directors Paul O’Dette and Stephen Stubbs, Opera Director Gilbert Blin, Orchestra Director Robert Mealy, and Dance Director Melinda Sullivan.

The 2019-2020 Boston Early Music Festival Concert Series is presented with support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, National Endowment for the Arts, Constellation Charitable Foundation, and WGBH Radio Boston, as well as a number of generous foundations and individuals from around the world.

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