A Vivaldi Festival

Thursday, March 3, 2011, 8:00 PM

Conductor Dennis Keene leads the Voices of Ascension in a chorus and orchestra program
of popular and rarely performed works by the master of the Venetian Baroque, Antonio
Vivaldi. The color and pageantry of 18th Century Venice will be in full display
with this program. Antonio Vivaldi, nicknamed “Il prete rosso” (“the red-headed
priest,”) lived his entire life amidst the splendor of the churches, palazzo, and
canals of this wondrous city; and the color and atmosphere of Venice are perfectly
depicted in his music.

As popular as Vivaldi’s works are today, his wonderful choral pieces are seldom
performed, especially by professional ensembles – with one exception, the Gloria,
RV589. But he composed two Glorias, and it is the other one – the Introduction and
Gloria, RV588, that we will perform this year. With its delightful solos and duets,
and splendid choruses, the work is every bit as fine as the more famous setting,
and yet, it is hardly ever performed. The infectiously happy Laetatus sum and Magnificat
(arguably his single finest choral work) are likewise seldom heard.

As an extra musical bonus, they will add Vivaldi’s famous double Trumpet Concerto
with two of this country’s finest players. Soloists are sopranos Elizabeth Baber
and Martha Cluver, mezzo-soprano Sylvie Jensen, tenor Drew Martin, and trumpeters
Kevin Cobb and Thomas Hoyt.

Tickets: $60, $40, $25, $10; half-price for students at the door.

For Voices of Ascension tickets and information, visit: Voices of Ascension or call the box office at (212) 358-7060.