Jean-Féry Rebel: Characters of Dance
Antonio Vivaldi: Concerto in G minor „per l’orchestra di Dresda”, RV 577
Jan Dismas Zelenka: Symphony in A minor, ZWV 189
Wilhelm Friedemann Bach: Adagio e Fuga, F 65
Georg Friedrich Handel: Trio Sonata in F major, HWV 392
Georg Philipp Telemann: Violin Concerto in F major, TWV 51:F4
The last baroque concert of the season will feature Reinhard Goebel as our guide for stops along the Italian, French, Czech and German baroque road. The New York Times has called him a “beacon in a sea of mediocrity”.
“Vivaldi did not actually compose five hundred concertos: he just wrote the same one five hundred times,” Stravinsky has said mockingly. Whether or not that’s true, concert pieces were one of the Italian baroque master’s fortes. Vivaldi wrote the G-minor violin concerto for the extraordinarily talented Staatskapelle Dresden, renowned throughout Europe.
Next up after the Italian baroque is the French, represented by its most innovative composer, Jean-Féry Rebel. His early works helped revolutionise violin techniques, and his dance music was unmatched in its popularity. His short suite, the unusually fresh Characters of Dance embodies the fashionable dances of Rebel’s time, offering fleeting glimpses of different characters in the whirlwind of a masquerade ball.
Reinhard Goebel played a key role in the rediscovery of the Czech composer Jan Dismas Zelenka, whose musical language was deeply influenced by Czech folk music. His art is closest to that of Bach, yet its abundance of unexpected turns in terms of dynamism and harmony come close to pushing the limits. The audience will witness as much in his Symphony in A minor.
The works of Handel and Telemann will allow glimpses into yet another aspect of baroque. Handel was 21 when he wrote his Trio Sonata in F major, culminating in a dramatic, chromatic way. This piece was also written for the Dresden orchestra, as was the Telemann violin concerto, with which the concert wraps up. Telemann allows the solo violin to sparkle while fusing it with the orchestra.