Wednesdays at 10:00 pm
A fresh feast of early music every week.
Join host Candice Agree for WFMT’s exciting weekly program of early music. Baroque&Before explores works written before 1750, featuring live concert recordings from some of the world’s most prestigious early music festivals, as well as commercially released recordings from WFMT’s vast library. From Russia to the Americas, from Northern Europe to the Mediterranean and Middle East, Candice presents internationally known artists on the early music scene, crafting a delightful mix of musicianship, music, and history.
Songs & Laments of the Sephardim
April 24, 2019
A special Passover edition of Baroque&Before. As Jews all over the world celebrate Passover this week, Baroque&Before remembers the story of the Israelites’ Exodus from Egypt and the transition from slavery to freedom. This week’s program is one of sacred, paraliturgical, celebratory, and secular music of the Jews of the Mediterranean: Spain, Greece, Italy, and the Ottoman Empire.
Pergolesi: Septem verba a Christo
April 17, 2019
Now attributed to Giovanni Battista Pergolesi on the basis of the most recent research, the Seven Words of Christ has been regarded, ever since it was discovered by Hermann Scherchen, as “one of the most heartfelt works of art, full of profound tenderness and an all-conquering sense of beauty.” Written during the last three years of life, the Septem verba ...
Drottningholm Baroque Ensemble: Musical Treasures at the Swedish Royal Court
April 10, 2019
Founded in 1971, the Drottningholm Baroque Ensemble presents late 17th- and early 18th-century music from Germany, Italy, Poland, and Sweden, including three works from the composer known as “The Swedish Handel.” Recorded live in concert January 21, 2017, in the Auditorium of Radio France Broadcasting House, Paris. Thanks to Classical WFMT’s association with the European Broadcasting Union, we’re able to ...
La Meridiana & Les voyages de l’amour: French Music for Woodwinds
April 3, 2019
Celebrating its 13th anniversary this year, Ensemble Meridiana’s five members come from four different countries, having met during their studies at the Schola Cantorum in Basel, Switzerland, where they specialized in early music. For its program Les voyages de l’amour, Ensemble Meridiana is joined by Mirko Arnone playing theorbo and Baroque guitar. Recorded live in concert in Rougemont, Switzerland’s Church ...
Avi Avital & The Virtuoso Mandolin
March 27, 2019
Les Violons du Roy welcomes its first-ever mandolin soloist Avi Avital for concerti grossi and concerti by Vivaldi, Handel, Paisiello, Durante, and more. Recorded live in concert November, 2018, in the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts Salle Bourgie. Thanks to Classical WFMT’s association with the European Broadcasting Union, we’re able to offer tonight’s program as a stream from March 28 ...
A Bach Anniversary Celebration with Monteverdi Choir & English Baroque Soloists
March 20, 2019
In celebration of the 334th anniversary of the birth of Johann Sebastian Bach on March 21 (Old Style,) we present the English Baroque Soloists and Monteverdi Choir in a program of Bach’s infrequently performed cantatas. John Eliot Gardner, who founded both performance groups, conducts. Recorded live in concert May 17, 2018 in Prague, in the Rudolfinum’s Dvořák Hall, as part ...
Women Baroque Composers
March 13, 2019
Celebrating Early Music Month and Women’s History Month on this edition of Baroque&Before, with works by French and Italian women composers of the 17th and 18th centuries. Ensemble Operabyrån was recorded live in concert in Sweden’s Nordmaling Church, as part of the Nordic Baroque Festival.
Torroella de Montgrí Festival: From Victoria to Cererols with Tenebrae
March 6, 2019
Tenebrae, the British chamber choir specializing in Renaissance polyphony, presents the magnificent Requiem Mass by Tomás Luis de Victoria. The program opens with two works by Joan Cererols: the Salve Regina and the Battle Mass. Born in Martorell, this year (September to September 2018-2019) marks the 400th anniversary of Cererols’s birth. Recorded live in concert August 8, 2018 in the ...
Utrecht Early Music Festival: Rameau’s Grands Motets
February 27, 2019
Jean-Philippe Rameau left behind only a small amount of sacred music. His grand motets, settings of psalm texts, were composed between 1713 and 1720. Vox Luminis, under the direction of Lionel Meunier, presents the three remaining complete motets. Recorded live in concert August 25, 2018, in TivoliVredenburg’s Main Hall, as part of the Utrechy Early Music Festival. Thanks to Classical ...
Treasures of the Neapolitan Baroque
February 20, 2019
In this recital from La Folia Early Music Festival, young French mezzo-soprano Juliette De Banes Gardonne is featured in a program of cantatas by Caresana, Porpora and Alessandro Scarlatti, little known, and in one case, unpublished, Joined by a chamber ensemble composed of harpsichord, theorbo, cello, flute, and violin. Recorded live in concert in Rougemont, Switzerland’s Church of Saint Nicholas.
L’Air français: The Art of the Intimate
February 13, 2019
In anticipation of Valentine’s Day, William Christie leads soprano Elodie Fonnard, baritone Marc Mauillon, and members of Les Arts Florissants in a program of airs, chansons, and cantatas. Recorded live in concert in the Chamber Hall of the Auditori in Girona (Gerona) as part of Nits de Clàssica a Girona (Classical Nights in Girona.)
Festive Music from the Hapsburg Court of Charles VI
February 6, 2019
Angelo Ragazzi’s Mass for his Holy Roman benefactor Charles VI is the centerpiece of tonight program. Lost for some 300 years, it’s presented tonight along with a Serenade by Ragazzi’s predecessor at the Habsburg Court, Johann Joseph Fux. Recorded live in concert August 18, 2018, in the French Church in Bern, Switzerland by the early music orchestra Les Passions de ...
Jean Guillou: Requiescet in pace
January 30, 2019
French organist, composer, pedagogue and organ builder Jean Guillou died January 26. He was 88. This week we remember Jean Guillou, titular organist at L’Église St. Eustache in Paris for 52 years, by his interpretations of Vivaldi, Bach, and more. Recordings used in this program come from Classical WFMT’s Richard and Mary L. Gray Music Library.
Cantate Deo — Sacred music from 17th-century Italy
January 23, 2019
Accordone, the innovative ensemble founded in 1984 by Guido Morini and Marco Beasley, presents celestial songs (motets for two similar voices) from the early 17th century by composers including Donati, Giamberti, and Monteverdi. Tonight’s recital was recorded live in concert June 6 in St. Procopius Basilica in the Moravian town of Třebíč, part of the Concentus Moraviae Festival.
La Scintilla: Sacred Baroque Music from Zürich
January 16, 2019
Orchestra La Scintilla was formed in 1998 by members of the Zürich Opera Orchestra. Early music was the spark (la scintilla) for the creation of the music ensemble. Contralto Wiebke Lehmkul and soprano Ana Quintans join the orchestra, led by Ottavio Dantone, for a program workwork by Alessandro Scarlatti, Gregori, Caldara, and Porpora. Recorded live in concert July 2, 2018, ...
Jordi Savall & The Red Book of Montserrat
January 9, 2019
The Shrine of the Virgin of Montserrat was a major pilgrimage site in the 14th century. El Llibre Vermell de Montserrat, or the Red Book of Montserrat, is a 14th-century collection of devotional texts and music for the pilgrims to the Catalonian Montserrat Monastery. Tonight we hear selections from the 6 music folios contained in El Llibre Vermell, presented by ...
Jos van Immerseel: Solo Organ Recital
January 2, 2019
Long before he was known as a conductor, Belgian musician Jos van Immerseel triumphed as a keyboardst, equally at home on harpsichord, fortepiano and organ. For his appearance in the Concentus Moraviae Festival, Mr. Immerseel gave a solo recital on the unique organ of Dubrovnik’s Church of the Elevation of the Holy Cross. Recorded live in concert.
Ave Atque Vale: Hail & Farewell
December 26, 2018
As 2018 draws to a close, we remember the life and work of three classical artists who died this past year, each, in various degrees, dedicating himself or herself to the performance and diffusion of early music: Italian conductor and founder of I Solisti Veneti Claudio Scimone, French oboist, conductor, and founder of La Grande Écurie et la Chambre du ...
French & German Baroque Music for Christmas
December 19, 2018
On this special two-hour Christmas edition of Baroque&Before, we present a Bach Concert for Christmas from Austria’s Sankt Pölten Cathedral, recorded live in concert December 8th; as well as a French Baroque Christmas from Montreal, recorded live in concert December 9th. Listen to this special Christmas program again anytime from December 20 through January 5, 2019 by pressing the “Listen” ...
Praetorius & Monteverdi in Dialogue
December 12, 2018
Ensemble le Moment Baroque, performing on period instruments, presents Praetorius & Monteverdi en dialogue, a program comparing two of the most important composers of the 17th century. We’ll hear instrumental selections from Claudio Monteverdi’s operas, as well as from Terpsichore of 1612 by Michael Praetorius. Recorded live in concert January 25, 2018, in the Église Saint Germain, a 13th-century church ...
Solomon Rossi & His Contemporaries
December 5, 2018
Soprano Sherezade Panthaki joins Philharmonia Baroque Chamber Players and members of the Philharmonia Chorale, under the direction of Nicholas McGegan, for Italian baroque music of the synagogue, the theater, and the court: sacred and secular works by Salamone Rossi, Claudio Monteverdi, and Benedetto Marcello. Tonight’s program was recorded live in concert April 8, 2018, in the Performance Hall of the ...