Sunday, January 19, 2020, 4 p.m.
Corpus Christi Church
Benjamin Bagby, director, voice and Anglo-Saxon harp
Hanna Marti, voice and harps; Stef Conner, voice
Norbert Rodenkirchen, wooden and bone flutes, harp
Words of Power: Charms, Riddles and Elegies of the Medieval Northlands, 8th-11th Centuries
Once again Sequentia awakens long-silent, ancient voices. The Old English Beowulf epic, the Icelandic Edda, and poems from the 10th-century Exeter Book give us a glimpse into a time far from ours yet near in spirit—a world of singing poets, warriors, seers, and philosophers. Under Bagby’s direction, the musicians sing and play harps and flutes for this witty and pungent program of chants, songs, and spoken riddles.
Post-concert Q and A
“Sequentia’s powerful rhetoric made the texts essential to the musical experience. The distant languages of medieval north Europe—Old High German, Anglo-Saxon, and especially Latin—inflected every rhythm and every pitch, startlingly different and yet intensely personal.” —San Francisco Classical Voice
Estimated run time: 85 minutes, no intermission.
Please note: lecture by Benjamin Bagby at 92nd Street Y on January 21 is CANCELED.
Artist Bios and Program
Sequentia is among world’s most respected and innovative ensembles for medieval music. Under the direction of Benjamin Bagby, Sequentia can look back on more than forty years of international concert tours, a comprehensive discography of more than recordings recordings spanning the entire Middle Ages (including the complete works of Hildegard von Bingen), film and television productions of medieval music drama, and a new generation of young performers trained in professional courses given by members of the ensemble.
Sequentia, co-founded by Bagby and the late Barbara Thornton, has performed throughout Western and Eastern Europe, the Americas, India, the Middle East, East Asia, Africa and Australia, and has received numerous prizes (including a Disque d’Or, several Diapasons d’Or, two Edison Prizes, the Deutsche Schallplattenpreis and a Grammy nomination) for many of its thirty recordings on the BMG/Deutsche Harmonia Mundi (SONY), Raumklang, Glossa and Marc Aurel Edition labels. The most recent CD releases include reconstructions of music from lost oral traditions of the Middle Ages (The Lost Songs Project), including 9th-and 10th-century Germanic songs for the Apocalypse (Fragments for the End of Time), the ensemble’s acclaimed program of music from the Icelandic Edda: The Rheingold Curse, as well as the earliest known European songs (Lost Songs of a Rhineland Harper), medieval liturgical chant (Chant Wars, a co-production with the Paris-based ensemble Dialogos), and most recently, Boethius: Songs of Consolation. Sequentia has created over eighty innovative concert programs which encompass the entire spectrum of medieval music, giving performances all over the world, in addition to their creation of music-theater projects such as Hildegard von Bingen’s Ordo Virtutum and the medieval Icelandic Edda. In 2017, Sequentia’s thirty-year project to record the complete works of Hildegard von Bingen was released by SONY as a nine-CD box set. The work of the ensemble is divided between a small touring ensemble of vocal and instrumental soloists, and a larger ensemble of voices for special performance projects. Upcoming projects include a version of the 14th –century Roman de Fauvel, staged by Peter Sellars. After many years based in Cologne, Germany, Sequentia’s home was re-established in Paris in 2001.
Sequentia is represented by Seth Cooper, www.sethcooperarts.com
Preferred Center: $55
Premium Balcony and Sides: $40
Partial View: $15
Balcony Blocked View: $10
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