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.
Listen to the past two weeks of Baroque&Before.
Jordi Savall: Works by Diego Ortiz & Joan Cererols
August 10, 2022
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.
Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo with Jordi Savall
September 22, 2021
Jordi Savall leads Le Concert des Nations, La Capella Reial de Catalunya, and soloists in Monteverdi’s five-act musical retelling of the legend of Orpheus and Eurydice, the Classical myth of patience, faith, and enduring love. Featuring mezzo Luciana Mancini, baritone Marc Mauillon, contralto Sara Mingardo, and bass Silvio Vitale, tonight’s presentation was recorded live in concert June 4, 2021, at ...
O, Jerusalem! Crossroads of Three Faiths with Apollo’s Fire
September 8, 2021
13th-century Persian poet Jalal al-Din Rumi described Jerusalem as “the place where everything is music … and brothers and strangers are one.” Apollo’s Fire, under the direction of Jeannette Sorrell, presents an exploration of the four quarters of Old Jerusalem (Jewish, Christian, Arab, and Armenian/Byzantine,) and the cross-cultural influences of the city’s inhabitants. The rhythms of daily life — love, ...
Voces Suaves & Cafebaum Banda Barocca
September 1, 2021
Tonight’s program takes us to Schaffhausen’s Kirche St. Johann for a program of Janitsch, Johannes Bach, and Johann Sebastian Bach, presented by two young ensembles based in Basel: Cafebaum Banda Barocca and vocal ensemble Voces Suaves. Recorded live in concert May 12, 2018 in Schaffhausen, Switzerland’s Bach Festival. Thanks to WFMT’s association with the European Broadcasting Union, we’ll be able ...
Cantatio presents “Alexander’s Feast”
August 18, 2021
On this edition of Baroque&Before, Ensemble Cantatio presents an ode with a libretto in English written by the German composer who, in addition to his English oratorios, was known for his Italian operas. Tonight, Handel’s ode to Saint Cecilia, Alexander’s Feast, with Ensemble Cantatio, directed by its founder John Duxbury. Tonight’s music was recorded live in concert October 27, 2020 ...
Pallas Nordica: Music for Queen Christina
August 11, 2021
Queen Christina I of Sweden (1626-1689,) one of the most educated women of the Baroque era, gave up her royal throne at the age of 28. Known as “Pallas Nordica”, the Athena or Minerva of the North, she left her native Sweden and travelled across Europe to Rome. She corresponded with and supported Europe’s leading contemporary artists and thinkers, including ...
August 4, 2021
On this edition of Baroque&Before, historically-informed violinist Eva Saladin, baroque cellist Daniel Rosin, and harpsichordist Johannes Keller present works by composers who lived or worked in Naples in the 18th century: Mascitti, Matteis, Cailò, Scarlatti, Lonati, and Piani. Tonight’s program was recorded on January 20, 2021 in Basel’s Stadtcasino, as part of the Basel Early Music Festival. Thanks to WFMT’s ...
Bach’s Mass in B Minor
July 28, 2021
Although written in the last years of his life, Bach’s Mass in B Minor had its beginnings some 15 years earlier. Never performed during Bach’s lifetime, the Mass in B Minor is rightly revered as one of mankind’s greatest musical and spiritual achievements. On this edition of Baroque&Before, Ivor Bolton leads Balthasar Neumann Chorus and B’Rock Orchestra in Bach’s masterwork. ...
Baroque delights – Maurice Steger & La Cetra Basel
July 21, 2021
Recorder virtuoso Maurice Steger and La Cetra Baroque Orchestra Basel were among the guest artists at the Engadin Festival, held since 1941 in & around St Moritz in Switzerland. The program is titled Baroque Delights, and that’s exactly what we’ll hear. Tonight’s program was recorded August 6, 2020, in the Reithalle, St. Moritz, as part of the Engadin Festival’s “Concerts ...
Hildegard von Bingen’s Ordo Virtutum
July 14, 2021
Twelfth-century mystic, writer, philosopher, and composer Hildegard von Bingen used all her gifts in the service of her unfaltering Christian faith which she channeled through her music in the morality play Ordo Virtutum (Order of the Virtues.) Comprising 82 songs in rhyme, Hildegard lays out the battle between good and evil; the Devil tempting the Soul to give in to ...
Solomon Rossi & His Contemporaries
July 7, 2021
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 ...
The Fortunes of Andromeda and Perseus: Spain’s First Opera
June 30, 2021
This week, Baroque&Before has the rare pleasure of presenting a performance of a work not performed publicly since the mid 17th century, or commercially recorded. Often referred to as Spain’s first opera, tonight’s presentation of Las Fortunas de Andrómeda y Perseo comes to us from a recording made live in concert January 25, 2020 at the Konzerthaus in Vienna as ...
El Gran Teatro Del Mundo: The Lullists; German Baroque Music à la française
June 16, 2021
A program of “goût réuni,” or united taste, brings us the music of German composers inspired and influenced by the French style. Known as “Lullists” after Jean-Baptiste Lully, works Johann Caspar Ferdinand Fischer, Georg Muffat, and Georg Philipp Telemann are featured this week, presented by El Gran Teatro Del Mundo under the direction of Julio Caballero Pérez. Tonight’s program was ...
Jordi Savall&Orpheus XXI: Music for Life and Dignity
May 19, 2021
It was in 2002 that the United Nation first declared May 21 as UNESCO World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development. On this week’s edition of Baroque&Before, our program celebrates this event with a Concert of Music for Life and Dignity. Jordi Savall leads Orpheus XXI, a group of professional musicians of diverse origins, at the Poblet Early ...
Ave Atque Vale: Harpsichordist Kenneth Cooper
April 28, 2021
Baroque&Before remembers early keyboardist Kenneth Cooper, who died March 13, 2021 at the age of 79. He’s best known for his improvisational skills, his spontaneity, and his rediscovery of 18th-century works, as well as performances of modern works written for the harpsichord. On this edition of Baroque&Before, we sample a very few of his performances from the Baroque era, part ...
Les Plaisirs: Secular Baroque Cantatas
April 21, 2021
What brings us joy? The simple things: friends, music, a piping hot cup of coffee. In 18th-century Europe, coffee was still a rather rare and not widely available beverage. On this edition of Baroque&Before, Collegium Marianum celebrates Baroque Europe’s coffee craze, along with a variety of delights and pleasures. Tonight’s program was recorded live in concert March 5, 2019, in ...
Cosmopolitanism of the Portuguese Baroque
April 14, 2021
Tonight’s program of chamber music by Portuguese composers and the Italian composers who influenced them is presented by Divino Sospiro, a chamber ensemble founded in Portugal in 2002, directed by the Italian-born conductor and violist Massimo Mazzeo, joined by soprano Eduarda Melo. The music we’ll hear was recorded live March 21, 2021 in the National Palace of Queluz. Due to ...
Bach’s Goldberg Variations with András Schiff
April 7, 2021
Join pianist András Schiff on a voyage through Bach’s monumental work for solo keyboard. The Goldberg Variations was recorded live in concert August 22, 2015 at London’s Royal Albert Hall, made available just recently thanks to WFMT’s affiliation with the European Broadcasting Union. Tonight’s program will be available as a stream for thirty days following tonight’s broadcast. A blue “Listen” ...
The Great Eighteen: Bach’s Leipzig Chorales
March 17, 2021
Written in the last decade of his life, Bach’s chorale preludes for organ mark the pinnacle of his sacred works for organ. Daniel Gauss, organist at the Bern Cathedral, plays the Gottlieb Leuw organ, built in 1729. Recorded live in concert June 11, 2019, as part of the series Evening Music at Bern Cathedral. Thanks to WFMT’s association with the ...
Bernardo Pasquini & The Martyrdom of Saint Vitus
March 3, 2021
The legend of Saint Vitus, with a cruel Roman emperor, exorcism, miracles, and martyrdom in the Colosseum, was not enough drama for 17th-century Roman nobility; it needed a love story too! In Pasquini’s oratorio, the emperor’s son of legend becomes Valeria, the pretty emperor’s daughter who falls in love with Vitus. Now, that’s entertainment! On this edition of Baroque&Before we’ll ...
Roderick Williams: Telemann, Bach, Handel
January 20, 2021
Baritone Roderick Williams is featured as soloist and as director of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in sacred cantatas by Bach and Telemann. Soprano Rowan Pierce joins Mr. Williams and the OAE for the secular cantata Apollo e Dafne, Handel’s poignant and seductive setting of passion and desire followed by regret and penitence from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Tonight’s program ...