Newswire | Monteverdi Choir Canadian Debut Features Bach’s Mass in B Minor

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Ottawa, October 14, 2023 – Soli Deo Gloria, Deutsche Grammophon, and the Theatre of Early Music will present the debut of the World-Renowned Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists Bach Mass in B minor Paroisse Saint François d’Assise, 20 Avenue Fairmont Ottawa Saturday, October 28 at 2:00pm.

The Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists will make their Canadian debut in the Nation’s capital city with a performance of J. S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor, a work widely considered a pinnacle not just of choral music, but of Western music as a whole. Often seen as an apt culmination to Bach’s extraordinary musical career, the Mass is the product of four decades of composition. Portions of it represent the composer’s final creations, while others have roots in music from as early as 1714.

From the opening collective cry of ‘Kyrie’, to the winding fugues and ultimate radiance of ‘Dona nobis pacem’, the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists will reveal all the variety of a work that encompasses wild virtuosity, immeasurable pathos and exuberant joy.

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The event is sponsored by the Theatre of Early Music in collaboration with leading promoters in the Ottawa Community including Music and Beyond, the Ottawa Bach Choir, the Rideau Chorale, Seventeen Voyces, the Ottawa Choral Society and Caelis.

About Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists

A choir founded to honour the colour of Italian music follows its performance at King Charles III’s coronation with a rendition of one of Bach’s final masterworks in this must-see concert conducted by acclaimed Portuguese conductor Dinis Sousa. The Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists are associated with the greatest musicians in the world including Canada’s finest singers Baritone Gerald Finley, Tenor Michael Schade, Soprano Nancy Argenta and the Countertenor Daniel Taylor.

The Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists’ musicians specialize in historically inspired projects across a variety of repertoire ranging from sacred music to semi-staged operas, as well as intimate chamber works. Last season, the Monteverdi Choir & Orchestras performed a number of successful tours including partnerships with the Berlin Philharmonic, Concertgebouw and Orchestre Philharmonique Luxembourg, Symphonies by Mozart and Haydn at venues in Europe and the US, a programme of Bach, Schütz and Schein at prestigious festivals across Europe and Beethoven’s late masterpiece: Missa solemnis at the BBC Proms, Berliner Festspiele and Wratisavia Cantans.

Monteverdi Choir & Orchestras (MCO) records on its own label, Soli Deo Gloria and collaborates with prestigious labels including Deutsche Grammophon, with over 150 recordings, films, and live streams, many of which have received critical acclaim. Notable recordings include J.S. Bach’s complete set of Cantatas, as part of the Bach Cantata Pilgrimage project in 2000 and film recordings of Monteverdi’s three surviving operas, as part of the RPS award winning Monteverdi 450 project in 2017. Alongside performances and recordings, MCO is committed to nurturing future generations of classical musicians.

About Dinis Sousa

Dinis Sousa is Associate Conductor of the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra and Principal Conductor of the Royal Northern Sinfonia. During the 2023/24 season Dinis will make his debut at Carnegie Hall conducting the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists in two programmes of Bach and Handel. This follows on from performances of Berlioz’s Les Troyens in 2023, including the Salzburg Festival, Berlin Festival and BBC Proms. This tour attracted exceptional critical acclaim; ‘Sousa was electrifying in moments of grandeur, high drama and emotional intensity’ (The Guardian). This season Dinis will make his debut with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. Recent engagements have included the BBC Philharmonic, Gulbenkian and Ulster Orchestras. Dinis is Founder and Artistic Director of Orquestra XXI, an award-winning orchestra which brings together some of the best young Portuguese musicians from around Europe.

Debut in the Nation’s Capital

For lovers of choral music, it has been a long wait but the United Kingdom’s multi award-winning, world touring, much-recorded Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists are set to appear in Ottawa thanks to the resolve of Daniel Taylor, O.C., the beloved singer, leading figure in the field of opera and early music and perhaps Canada’s most popular voice teacher. Taylor first invited to Canada the Tallis Scholars, the Gabrieli Consort, Voces8 and now the famed Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists. The choral community of Ottawa has come together in support of the concert, including the Festival of Music and Beyond’s Julian Armour, Seventeen Voices’s Kevin Reeves, the Ottawa Bach Choir’s Lisette Canton and Caelis Academy’s Matthew Larkin. Their hope is that the audience will come together to reflect on love and forgiveness and the sheer humanity found in every note of Bach’s masterpiece. The ensembles will be joined by a group of outstanding soloists including Alex Ashworth, Hilary Cronin, Sarah Denbee, Jonathan Hanley, Bethany Horak-Hallett, Frederick Long, Reginald Mobley and Nick Pritchard.This will be the only performance in Canada by the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists as part of their North American tour bringing them to Chicago’s Harris Theater, Princeton’s Richardson Auditorium at McCarter Theatre Center and New York’s Carnegie Hall.



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