Philadelphia classical music events, discussion, and directory
Tempesta di Mare kicked off their ambitious Opus 10 Festival last night at the Friends meeting house to an audience that I expected would be a bit larger - especially considering that this was a chance to see a top notch baroque concert for free. Perhaps it was the beautiful day or the fact that there would be three more chances to see Tempesta during the Festival? Whatever the reason, the folks who did attend were treated to Tempesta's typically high quality performances and a nice selection of music written in the 1700s.
There were pieces of surprising violin virtuosity, interesting instrumentation features, and a piece that was clearly apart from the others: Joseph Haydn's Divertimento No. 10 in A. In the context of a purely baroque concert, this classical work written less than 40 years after the some of the other works followed a very different structure, and I was able to appreciate the passage from the baroque to the classical period in a whole new light. I also appreciated the fairly brief, interesting, and easy to read program notes. They supplied just the right amount of content for me to absorb the information as the program progressed while helping me to appreciate the music even more.
Gwyn Roberts expertly performed perhaps the trickiest pieces I've ever heard for recorder, and Richard Stone (theorbo) and Adam Pearl's (harpsichord) continuo was so tight that it was difficult at times to distinguish the instruments. Abaco's Sonata in F was full of interesting instrumentation duos, recorder sections and a joyful Gavotta: Allegro. The ensemble finished the evening with the full ensemble in Vivaldi's Recorder Concerto in D in which Roberts shined with tricky bird chirps and difficult passages.
The festival continues today and next weekend, so there's still time to catch one of their performances. Tempesta de Mare: Opus 10 Festival