When a baroque orchestra misses the plane…

…. it plays in the bus.

It’s the Venice Baroque Orchestra.


Video by Nicola Benedetti.

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  • They presented a brilliant concert at Gates Concert Hall in Denver this past week. Eight Baroque concertos, for solo violin concertos with Ms. Benedetti. An unforgettable evening.

  • I’m not sure where on their tour this occurred, but I have to note their appearance with Nicola Benedetti at the historic Cabell Hall at the University of Virginia, which is in Charlottesville, about 120 miles southwest of Washington. The event was kind of a magical mix of artistry, acoustics and audience, something that Nicola herself noted in very heartfelt comments to the audience at the end of the evening before they dove into encores by Vivaldi and Tartini. The sound of their instruments in the right environment – the Cabell Hall auditorium is kind of a three-quarters-in-the-round, amphitheater-like setting even if indoors – creates a real dramatic tug to the music that rescues it from any sense that baroque music is just for background entertainment. I noticed during their performance of the Four Seasons concertos that quite a number of the audience had sat forward in their seats as Nicola and the 15 musicians used precise and specific articulations, along with some very dramatic tempos, to make it a real story. I’m not sure the bus provides quite the same level of acoustic support for the specific timbre of their instruments, but at least you get a sense! Very entertaining.

      • It’s come to my attention that when people see my comment, they naturally contact the University of Virginia for more information about the concert series in question. Actually the Venice Baroque Orchestra and Nicola Benedetti appeared under the auspices of an independent presenting organization called the Tuesday Evening Concert Series, which brings a diverse set of leading artists to Charlottesville. Just google “Tuesday Evening Concert Series Virginia” and all the relevant links and information should come right up. Thanks.

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