Baroque&Before

Wednesdays at 10:00 pm
Baroque&Before

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.

The Five Kingdoms of Mediæval Spain

December 11, 2019

Roman, Germanic, Byzantine, French, Arabic, and Jewish cultures all contributed to Spanish music. This week, a program of vocal music from Spain from the 13th-17th centuries: settings of secular and sacred texts by Tomás Luis de Victoria and Mateo Flecha the Elder, plus anonymous Sephardic and Navarrese love songs, reflecting the mix of cultures throughout the Five Kingdoms of Mediæval ...

Jordi Savall: Works by Diego Ortiz & Joan Cererols

December 4, 2019

Jordi Savall and La Capella Reial bring to life works by two composers from Spain with a Neapolitan connection: Toledo-born composer and music theorist Diego Ortiz, and Catalan musician and Benedictine monk Joan Cererols. Performances come from recordings from Classical WFMT’s Richard and Mary L. Gray Music Library.

Lars Vogt & Bach’s Goldberg Variations

November 27, 2019

One of the essentials from the keyboard repertoire, Johann Sebastian Bach’s Goldberg Variations is far-reaching in the compendium of emotions and sentiments it embraces, offering endless possibilities for interpretation. The transparency, delicacy, and fantasy in the treatment of the theme and variations, not to mention perfection, puts the Goldberg Variations at the pinnacle of Bachian keyboard writing. Tonight we’ll hear ...

Codex Calixtinus: Vespers of Saint James

November 20, 2019

Since the ninth century, the routes to Santiago de Compostela leading to the sanctuary of St. James have attracted countless pilgrims and exercised a potent mystique. What has achieved less attention is the music originally sung during the services in honor of the saint. Marcel Pérès’s in-depth study of the Codex Calixtinus, preserved at the Cathedral of Santiago, has led ...

Venetian Baroque Masterpieces

November 13, 2019

Violinist Dmitry Sinkovsky, cellist Ilze Grudule, and harpsichordist Ieva Saliete present masterpieces of the Baroque of the Venetian School: works by composers who flourished in the Republic of Venice in the 17th and 18th centuries. Recorded live in concert July 10, 2019 in Riga’s Mazajā ģildē (Small Guild Hall) as part of the International Festival of Early Music. Thanks to ...

La Stagione: Liebe, was ist schöner als die Liebe

November 6, 2019

Like many other composers of his time, Georg Philipp Telemann repeatedly addressed the theme of love in his operas and cantatas; among them, so-called wedding cantatas, commissioned by wealthy bridal couples for their wedding celebrations. One of these, Liebe, was ist schöner als die Liebe, receives its modern day premiere on this week’s program, along with two more Telemann secular ...

Heinrich Schütz: Musikalische Exequien

October 30, 2019

Heinrich Schütz wrote Musikalische Exequien, Op. 7, the centerpiece of tonight’s program, upon the request of German Count ‎Heinreich II of Reuss-Gera. It includes texts taken from the Old Testament, the gospels, and ‎Lutheran chorales. Schütz most probably wrote it when he was Italy, where he ‎became interested in and able to compose music to capture the meanings and imagery ...

Un Compás: A Voyage from Spain to the Orient

October 23, 2019

Euskal Barrokensemble (Basque Baroque Ensemble) explores the musical culture of the Mediterranean and its influence on Spanish and Italian classical music in this program recorded live in concert July 16, 2018, in the Troja Castle, one of Prague’s most beautiful Baroque villas, as part of Prague’s Summer Early Music Festival. Thanks to WFMT’s association with the European Broadcasting Union, we’ll ...

Cavalli’s “La Calisto” from Madrid’s Teatro Real

October 16, 2019

The genius of Francesco Cavalli has languished for centuries, and only now is his music receiving the attention it deserves. Today, the joyful La Calisto, based on Ovid’s Metamorphosis, has taken its deserved place as a fundamental title in Baroque opera. For its debut at the Teatro Real, Ivor Bolton conducts the Orquesta Barroca de Sevilla, Monteverdi Continuo Ensemble, and ...

La petite merveille & il Arcangelo

October 9, 2019

Violinist Lina Tur-Bonet and harpsichordist Kenneth Weiss invite us on a journey through the music of Élisabeth Jacquet de la Guerre, known as “La petite merveille” (The Little Marvel) and Il Arcangelo (Arcangelo Corelli.) Recorded live in concert February 14, 2019, in the Barcelona History Museum’s Capella de Santa Àgata (Saint Agnes Chapel) as part of Festival Llums d’Antiga (Lights ...

Tiana Early Music Festival: Organs tell songs; Los órganos dizen chaçones

October 2, 2019

Guillermo Pérez presents 14th-century music performed on the iconic 14th and 15th century keyboard known as the organetto. Tonight’s recital was recorded live in concert June 6, 2018, in Tiana, Barcelona’s Chapel of Our Lady of Joy, an 11th century hermitage, as the closing recital of the Tiana Early Music Festival. Thanks to WFMT’s association with the European Broadcasting Union, ...

Avi Avital & The Virtuoso Mandolin

September 25, 2019

Les Violons du Roy welcomes Avi Avital, the ensemble’s first-ever mandolin soloist, 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 September ...

Jordi Savall & The Red Book of Montserrat

September 18, 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 ...

Utrecht Early Music Festival: Rameau’s Grands Motets

September 11, 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 Tivoli Vredenburg’s Main Hall, as part of the Utrecht Early Music Festival. Thanks to ...

Torroella de Montgrí Festival: From Victoria to Cererols with Tenebrae

September 4, 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. Recorded live in concert August 8, 2018 in the Church of Sant Genís in the small Catalan town of Torroella de Montgrí on Spain’s Costa ...

The Baroque Organ: Ton Koopman in Japan

August 28, 2019

Dutch conductor, harpsichordist, and organist Ton Koopman presents a solo organ recital of masterworks of the Baroque. Recorded live in concert July 13, 2018, Mr. Koopman performs on the Kuhn organ of 71 stops and 5200 pipes in Japan’s Muza Kawasaki Symphony Hall.

ORA Singers: Settings of Miserere – Songs of Hope

August 21, 2019

The ORA Singers presents a program of Settings of the Miserere from Allegri to Byrd to Tallis. Recorded live in concert June 7, 2019 in St. Peter’s Cathedral in Regensburg, as part of the Regensburg Early Music Festival. Thanks to Classical WFMT’s association with the European Broadcasting Union, we’re able to offer tonight’s program as a stream for 30 days ...

Jordi Savall: El Llibre Vermell de Montserrat

August 14, 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 ...

Ave Atque Vale: Hail & Farewell, Anner Bylsma

August 7, 2019

Called the “Rostropovich of the baroque cello” by the Boston Globe, Anner Bylsma was one of the leading cellists in the world. On this edition of Baroque&Before, we remember Dutch cellist Anner Bylsma, who died July 25, 2019 at the age of 85. We say Ave Atque Vale — Hail & Farewell, and share his recordings of Bach, Corelli, and ...

Telemann in Paradise

July 31, 2019

At the age of 24, Telemann received an invitation to become Kapellmeister for the court of Count Erdmann II of Promnitz at Sorau — now Żary — in Poland. The young composer was inspired by the melodies and the skills in improvisation of the Polish folk musicians. The music he sought out and absorbed during his brief stay in Poland ...

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