Happy February! While you may be catching up on our episodes or looking forward to new ones (the episode to come this Tuesday is an intense one; just have a listen to the music), there is plenty of new music to be seen in the Baltimore area. If you don’t live around here, feel free to send us events around you that are going on; while we live here, the internet, of course, reaches much further. We’re going to see the Peabody Studio Orchestra perform Laura Karpman’s Ask Your Mama this evening. Here’s what’s going on the rest of the month!
NOW HEAR THIS PRESENTS ÉMILIE
Another Peabody performance; the new music ensemble Now Hear This presents Kaija Saariaho’s Émilie, about Émilie du Chatelet, featuring nine different sopranos portraying this 18th-century scientific visionary. The show is free, on February 6 at 7:30.
“CLOTHED IN SUN” AT ST. DAVID’S
St. David’s Church in Roland Park’s next First Friday concert, February 7 at 7:30, features their ensemble-in-residence for this season, Third Practice, presenting a program of Marian music set by composers such as Josquin, Purcell, Poulenc, and Pärt, as well as new works by Allison Clendaniel and James Young. Suggested donation is $15, $10 for retirees and students, and no obligation for children 12 and under.
NEW MUSIC BY IRANIAN WOMEN
Hear the Washington premieres of new works composed by Iranian-born composers Anahita Abbasi, Aida Shirazi, and Niloufar Nourbakhsh, founders of the Iranian Female Composers’ Association, performed by an outstanding wind and percussion ensemble from New York. The performance will be at the Smithsonian National Museum of Asian Art, February 8 at 7:30; tickets are $6.
NEW FLUTE MUSIC AT THE BMA
Christian Paquette, winner of Peabody’S 2019 Yale Gordon Competition, presents an afternoon of music featuring new works by Toshio Hosokawa and Kyle Puebla Dubin, as well as new arrangements by Paquette himself, at the Baltimore Museum of Art, February 8 at 3 PM, as part of Shriver Hall Concert Series.
OPERA ON TAP DC PRESENTS LOCAL MUSIC
The DC chapter of Opera on Tap presents an all-DC program; DC singers will perform the music of DC composers at The Dew Drop Inn, February 9 at 3 PM. Tickets are $15.
NICCOLO SELIGMANN AT STRATHMORE
Niccolo Seligmann (you can hear him on Episode 3) is the current Artist in Residence at Strathmore, and you can see him perform there on February 12 and 26, both at 7:30. His primary instrument is the viola da gamba (he has a new album called Kinship coming out near the end of the month), but knowing the number of instruments he plays, don’t expect that to be all you hear!
THE CHAMPION WITH PEABODY CHAMBER OPERA
Peabody Chamber Opera presents the English-language premiere of Béla Pintér’s The Champion. Using the music of Puccini, The Champion tells a story of the Governor of the fictional state of Wynoma, whose tumultuous love life reaches a head after a successful election day. He is the kind of politician you would expect to find in a tabloid: rotten to the core, representing a political elite drowning in its own lies, and helpless as he submerges deeper and deeper in his own morass. Performances run February 13-16 at the Baltimore Museum of Art; tickets are $25.
THE FIRST THING THAT HAPPENS
A new opera at a new venue; the music is by Horse Lords with text and direction by Lola B. Pierson, and it will be at The Voxel in Charles Village. The opera is constructed in front of the audience as it’s being performed where language, visual elements, and sound operate interchangeably; speech is visualized and stage action is sonified, data is interpreted and misinterpreted, communication is frustrated yet attempted again. The work questions what we exchange in order to connect with other humans. The show runs from February 13-March 1; admission is pay-what-you-can. Check out the write-up in Baltimore Brew!
IN THE STACKS PART 10
In the Stacks presents See Also, a site-specific, immersive theater experience exploring Baltimore’s historic George Peabody Library and other Johns Hopkins collections. The production is inspired by “see also” references, a traditional library cataloging practice that linked different terms on catalog cards. Following threads (both figurative and literal) around the George Peabody Library in a choose-your-own-adventure style, participants will encounter visual art, soundscapes, and performers portraying character composites based on historical women and non-binary individuals from the collections of the Johns Hopkins Sheridan Libraries and University Museums. The performance will culminate in the world premiere of a work by contemporary female composer Briay Conditt. Performances are at 6, 7, and 8 PM on February 18; each performance is limited to 100 guests and the suggested donation is $20.
INVOKE AT STRATHMORE
Alumni of the Strathmore Artist in Residence program, Invoke return to Strathmore on February 20 at 7:30. This string quartet seamlessly weaves multiple American musical traditions, including bluegrass, Appalachian fiddle tunes, jazz, and minimalism into its own stylized brand of contemporary music. Tickets are $30.
LE CABARET DU CARMEN COMES TO BALTIMORE
IN Series brings their new take on Bizet’s Carmen to Baltimore Theatre Project February 21-23. As audiences sit at tables with performers, a tango-ensemble brings a beloved music to life up-close-and-personal, and the ultimate femme-fatale begins her intoxicating and immortal chanteuse performance. (In our opinion, this company is doing the exact right thing with opera and you should go support them!)
CELEBRATING AFRICAN-AMERICAN OPERA SINGERS
Opera NOVA will hold its 3rd Annual “Celebrating African-American Opera Singers: Past and Present” Concert on the Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center, February 22 at 6 PM. This program will feature opera arias, art songs, spirituals, and musical theater pieces performed by rising, promising black artists, including Elise Christina Jenkins, who you can look forward to hearing on an upcoming episode of Pause and Listen!
TO CELEBRATE THE NEED
An evening of vocal music composed by Peter Dayton, featuring some of the finest musical talents of the mid-Atlantic (copied from the event and awfully nice of him to say so, as John will be singing on the program). Come join Peter on his 30th birthday (February 22 at 8 PM) to celebrate the need of friendship and comrades during the coldest, darkest season. A journey of music for soloists, and TTBB ensembles, setting texts by Paul Blackburn, William Bronk, A.E. Housman, Walt Whitman, and W.B. Yeats, presented as always at Studio 5N.
ANDREW OSWINKLE’S MASTER’S RECITAL
Andrew Oswinkle (a panelist on Episode 1) presents his master’s guitar recital, Wednesday, February 26 at 6:30 pm in Griswold Hall (the one, up the really cool stair case). He’ll be doing some Dyens, Coste, Pujol (the living one) and some other good stuff.
SCENES FROM MASTERPIQUE THEATER
Pique Collective returns to Black Cherry Puppet Theater with a program of theatrically inspired pieces. The musicians will perform an elaborate, rhythmic choreography on resonant tables, comment on the right to Loiter in Baltimore City, examine the inner monologue of a video game character, tell stories of the undead, and challenge the audience with a mathematical equation. February 28 at 8 PM; tickets are $10/$12/$15.
FOR OUR PITTSBURGH LISTENERS
Music on the Edge’s 3rd Beyond Festival will bring together touring and local acts in exploration and celebration of microtonal music! This Saturday, February 29 marathon concert shows off the enormous talent of Pittsburgh musicians. The show is at the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium.