Bach – Alio Modo
Saturday, November 28, 2015, 8:00 p.m.

The acts of borrowing and re-sampling are as old as Western music itself, and Johann Sebastian Bach was prolific in this regard, whether by adapting non-religious music to a sacred purpose, or by re-scoring his own compositions for new groups of musicians. Scaramella embraces this approach, creating a fresh sonority for Bach’s 6th (as well as a 7th) Brandenburg concerto, plus several of his keyboard pieces, and other works that were originally designated for voices or violins. This ‘low consort’ ensemble brings to Toronto an international team of ace viol players: Liz Rumsey (Australian, living in Basel), Josephine van Lier (Dutch, living in Edmonton), Debra Lonergan (American) and Marilyn Fung (Hong Konger, living in Michigan).

Elizabeth Rumsey and Joëlle Morton – tenor viols
Josephine van Lier and Debra Lonergan – bass viols
Marilyn Fung – violone, David Rumsey – harpsichord

Délices de la solitude
Saturday, March 5, 2016, 8:00 p.m.

The itsy-bitsy pardessus de viole is the smallest member of the viol family, but was created late in 17th century France. Initially, its high tuning enabled violin and oboe music to be played without the player having to shift to stratospheric regions. Plus chords and double stops lie relatively comfortably under the fingers. And because the pardessus was held on the lap and played with an underhand bow technique, its ‘modest’ postural details were considered appropriate for use by women; it came to be a particularly beloved pastime for aristocratic French dilettantes, with a special repertoire all its own. In this program of works by French composers, Montreal virtuosa Mélisande Corriveau presents gems from a brand new CD, using an original French instrument by Nicolas Bertrand, dated c1710.

Mélisande Corriveau – pardessus de viole, Eric Milnes - clavecin
Joëlle Morton – basse de viole

 

Sound the Trumpet!
Saturday, April 16, 2016, 8:00 p.m.

During the Baroque era it was quite common for arias to be accompanied by a prominently featured instrument that served as equal partner to the voice, providing instrumental ‘commentary’ on the vocal line. And what could possibly be more exuberant and jubilant than the trumpet? In this program, the baroque trumpet serves in an obbligato capacity to a solo soprano, as a symbol of celebration, power, strength, courage, victory and joy. Young superstars, soprano Dawn Bailey and trumpeter Justin Bland made their collaborative debut to great critical acclaim in May 2015 at the Edmonton Early Music Festival. Scaramella reunites them in Toronto for an opulent program of cantatas and arias by Henry Purcell, Alessandro Melani, J.S. Bach, Tarquinio Merula, and more.

Dawn Bailey – soprano, Justin Bland– baroque trumpet
Rezan Onen-Lapointe and Michelle Odorico – baroque violins
Joëlle Morton – violone, David Podgorski – harpsichord

Liz Rumsey
Josephine van Lier
Mélisande Corriveau
Dawn Bailey
Justin Bland