Considering some of the recently reported “anniversary numbers,” five is relatively modest. Nevertheless, in the context of their ambitions and accomplishments, it is definitely worth observing that 2011–2012 will be the fifth season of Voices of Music. The slogan on their Web site (“In which every musician has a voice”) is particularly apposite. Their focus is on the chamber music side of the Renaissance and Baroque repertoires; and, through their Young Artists Concerts, their concern extends from the present to the future. Furthermore, that interest in the future itself extends beyond the next generation of talent to the next generation of listener awareness. They have thus established a significant presence in cyberspace as the first early music ensemble to broadcast highlights from their performances in High Definition Video.
There are three concerts scheduled for the 2011–2012 season. The performances in San Francisco are as follows:
- Saturday, November 5: Fairest Isle, a recital of the songs of Henry Purcell by tenor Thomas Cooley, accompanied by Katherine Kyme and Carla Moore on Baroque violins, Elisabeth Reed on Baroque cello, Hanneke van Proosdij on harpsichord, and David Tayler on archlute.
- Saturday, January 21: The Art of the Baroque Violin, featuring soloist Elizabeth Blumenstock with continuo accompaniment provided by William Skeen on Baroque cello, along with van Proosdij and Tayler.
- Saturday, March 3: a concert of sacred vocal music featuring Giovanni Battista Pergolesi’s setting of the “Stabat Mater” sequence. The program will also include two sacred motets: “In turbato Mare Irato” by Antonio Vivaldi and “Infirmata vulnerata” by Alessandro Scarlatti. Vocal soloists will be Dominique Labelle and Meg Bragle. The instrumental ensemble will consist of violinists Blumenstock and Kyme, Lisa Grodin on Baroque viola, Skeen, Farley Pearce on violone, van Proosdij (this time on organ), and Tayler.
All San Francisco concerts take place at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church (1111 O’Farrell Street, just west of the corner with Franklin Street) at 8 PM. In addition St. Mark’s will be the venue for the annual free concert, An Evening with the Stars, which presents the competition winners from the Young Artists program performing with members of the Voices of Music ensemble directed by Tayler and van Proosdij. This will take place at 8 PM on February 4.
Further information can be found at the Voices of Music Web site. There is a Web page for all three concerts in the series, and tickets may be purchased through a secure Web page maintained by Ticket Turtle. Single tickets are $35 each with a variety of opportunities for a $5 discount summarized at the Ticket Turtle site. A subscription for the entire season costs $90 with corresponding opportunities for a $25 discount. Finally, student rush seats (based on a valid student ID card) will be available, subject to availability, for $5, starting 45 minutes to each concert.