Music in the Mansion, Symphony in C, and Songs of Solomon

BSR Classical Interludes, November 2023

4 minute read
A bright, empty ballroom with white walls, large windowed doors. A carpet covers much of the floor
Music in the Mansion will fill the ballroom in the Hamilton Mansion at the Woodlands. (Photo courtesy of the Woodlands.)

As well as bringing us Daylight Saving Time, November kicks off with performances that range from Telemann to Tchaikovsky, Debussy to Barber, Shakespeare to Smetana to Schoenfeld, and introduces us to the music of Salamone Rossi, someone we may never have heard. Happy listening!

Night Music: The Godfather
Friday, November 3, 7pm
St. Mary’s Church Hamilton Village, 3916 Locust Walk, Philadelphia

When J.S. Bach’s son Carl Philipp Emanuel wrote in 1775 that Georg Phillip Telemann "raised me out of the baptismal font," it was both symbolic and literal. Telemann was his godfather, a role he fulfilled throughout Emanuel’s life. For this concert, the Night Music ensemble (Karen Dekker, violin/viola; Steven Zohn, flute; and Heather Miller Lardin, viola da gamba) will be joined by guests Leon Schelhase (harpsichord) and Priscilla Herreid (oboe), someone whom we see most often with her ensemble Piffaro. At 6:15pm, Dr. Ellen Exner will give a pre-concert lecture.

Symphony in C: Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto
Saturday, November 4, 8pm
Gordon Theater, Rutgers-Camden Center for the Arts, 314 Linden Street, Camden

Symphony in C is the region’s “young professionals orchestra,” and the ensemble opens its season with the debut of its new music director, Noam Aviel. She will conduct Smetana’s Bartered Bride Overture, the Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 4, and Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2 (with pianist Harmony Zhu.) Aviel came to the orchestra in July from San Antonio, where she led the San Antonio Symphony as associate conductor and was named one of 25 “Renaissance Women” who have shaped the city.

Penn Live Arts: The Songs of Solomon
Thursday, November 9, 7:30pm
Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral, 19 South 38th Street, Philadelphia

Salamone Rossi was a Jewish composer working in Italy at the same time as Monteverdi. Largely ignored until the 20th century, Rossi was a multifaceted musician who wrote for the glittering court of Mantua as well as for the synagogue, including the innovative work The Songs of Solomon (1623). The concert features mezzo-soprano Meg Bragle, the chamber ensemble Filament (Evan Few, Elena Kauffman, and John Walthausen), and others.

On November 7, at 5:30pm, a roundtable titled “Rossi and Jewish Music in Early Modern Italy” will be held in Penn’s Van Pelt-Dietrich Library (sixth floor), Class of 1978 Pavilion. Moderated by Penn’s Mauro Calcagno, the discussion features musicologists Rebecca Cypess (Rutgers), Edwin Seroussi (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), Bragle (UPenn), and others discussing Rossi’s life, music, and the context of his work. The session is free, but reservations are required.

Philadelphia Chamber Music Society: Music and Shakespeare
Friday, November 10, 7:30pm
American Philosophical Society, Franklin Hall, 427 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia

This season, PCMS has its usual full slate of first-rate concerts, but here’s something a little different. Actor Anthony Heald will offer readings from Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets, interspersed with guitarist David Leisner playing music by Dowland, Bach, Schubert, Villa-Lobos, Britten, and Leisner. The hour-long presentation by these two acclaimed performers is also available to purchase as a live-streamed concert.

The Woodlands: Monument and Memory: Music Inspired by Paul Cret
Saturday, November 11, 4pm
Woodlands, Hamilton Mansion, 4000 Woodland Avenue, Philadelphia

The Music at the Mansion series (under the artistic direction of violist Amy Leonard) presents chamber works in the elegant Hamilton Mansion ballroom. This concert is in conversation with Paul Cret (1876-1945), the notable Philadelphia architect who is buried in the Woodlands Cemetery (Section K). The ensemble includes Leonard, Karen Decker and Tess Varley (violins), Gretchen Gettes (cello), and Antonello DiMatteo (clarinet) in works by Francaix, Clarke, Wetzger, Barber, and Debussy.

Artcinia: Trios for Piano: The Modernist and the Master
Sunday, November 12, 3pm
First Presbyterian Germantown, 35 West Chelten Avenue, Philadelphia

Artcinia continues to make a musical mark in the area by presenting all kinds of music in all corners of the region. For this concert, they offer a diverse afternoon that features Timothy Schwarz (violin), Glenn Fischbach (cello), and Thomas Weaver (piano) in Paul Schoenfeld's lively Cafe Music (blending classical, jazz, and folk elements) coupled with Beethoven's revered Archduke Trio.

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