As part of its educational remit Leeds Baroque, and with the help of the Friends of Leeds Baroque , the orchestra is building a collection of Baroque instruments available on loan to young players who do not yet have a period instrument of their own.
Donations to the Friends 'fiddle fund' has enabled the orchestra to purchase a baroque viola. We have recently received 3 generous donation of modern violins for sale to raise funds for Baroque instruments and we hope to purchase a good baroque violin with the proceeds of these sales. The sales are being looked after for us by the Used Instruments Agency at The Early Music Shop in Saltaire where they can be viewed by interested purchasers. If you know anyone who might be interested please pass on the information. Two of these instruments are already listed on the EMS website and can be viewed here: 3055 S and 3055 S
Honorary Patron for Leeds Baroque
Leeds Baroque's next Concert (Nov 15) will feature a performance of Handel's best known coronation Anthem - Zadok the Priest. The work features in the latest BBC 'Ten Pieces' project - so if you have young friends who's school has been involved with the project - bring them to the concert - tickets for students and under16s are FREE. For more information on the Ten Pieces project for secondary schools go to the Ten Pieces website
Leeds Baroque Choir and Orchestra have just been awarded a grant of £1,000 to commission a new work for ‘period instrument’ orchestra.
The grant, from Leeds City Council’s Arts funding programme, Leeds Inspired, enables Leeds Baroque to commission young composer and University of Leeds alumnus, Christopher Roberts to write a short companion piece for the Leeds Baroque concert of works for state occasions by Handel on 15 November 2015. Christopher is no stranger to composition for ‘period’ instruments having won the York Early Music Festival Young composers competition with a work for the noted viol consort Fretwork. Chris is well placed to write for Leeds Baroque having worked with them on several occasions as a continuo player and cellist.
Leeds Baroque Chairman Bryan White said “This is a very exciting and innovative development for Leeds Baroque – the new piece will use the forces available to Handel, which features the distinctive sound of gut strung strings and early wind instruments, but in a work very much of the 21st century.”
We are delighted to announce that Sir Alan Langlands, Vice Chancelllor of leeds University has accepted an invitation be become Leeds Baroque's Honorary Patron.
LB Bassoonist wins photo prize
Members of Leeds Baroque have many strings to their bows not least our regular bassoonist Maggie Bruce who is rapidly making a name for herself as a wild-life photographer.
Here is her winner entry in the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust's recent photographic competition.
The Leeds Baroque Summer concert this season features one of Henry Purcell's best loved works - King Arthur (or The British Worthy), but as with many of Purcell's dramatic works presentation of a complex, if not to say convoluted plot presents difficulties for a modern concert audience.
For their performance on June 14 2015 they will present a reworking of Dryden's original text specially prepared by Richard Andrews and presented by four actors.
Richard is Emeritus Professor of Italian at the University of Leeds with a particular interest in European theatre from 1500-1800.
It is with great sadness that we announce the recent death of Jack Edwards.
Artistic Director/Stage Director: Jack Edwards
Originally trained as an actor and designer Jack Edwards has worked in the field of Baroque opera for twenty-five years. Jack was Artistic Director of 'Opera Restored' and with musical director Peter Holman directed all its productions. As an independent director he has travelled the world, directing Purcell's The Fairy Queen in Adelaide, Dido and Aeneas in Bremen, and Pergolesi's La Serva Padrona in Nova Scotia. For the Boston Early Music Festival, USA he has directed Purcell's King Arthur, Luigi Rossi's L'Orfeo and Cavalli's Ercole Amante which transferred to the Utrecht Early Music Festival. The Boston production of L'Orfeo was also presented at the 18th century theatre in Drottningholm, Sweden and shown on Swedish television. He directed Caldara's Dafne in Chile for a national tour and returned in 2000 to direct Dido and Aeneas taking up a residential post at the Instituto de Musica de Santiago.
For the 10th Anniversary of Leeds Baroque he directed and narrated for the performance of Purcell's The Indian Queen
As an actor he has performed over one hundred anthologies of poetry and music with many of the leading early music ensembles. He held a teaching post in Theatre Studies and movement at the Drama Studio London.
We are delighted to announce that our very own Jillian Johnson MBE has been named as one of the University of Leeds' Women of Achievement for 2015. The University awarded the title of 'Woman of Achievement' to just 13 inspirational staff members and students in recognition of International Women's Day (Sunday 8th March 2015). Congratulations, Jillian!
Jillian, Administrator of Leeds Baroque, and Artistic Director of the University of Leeds International Concert Series, was awarded an MBE for services to music and higher education in Leeds in 2013. Read more about the University's Women of Achievement here.
Leeds Baroque's spring concert will bring the Leeds Early Music Festival to a rousing conclusion with performances of works by two of Italy's most popular composers - Vivaldi and Pergolesi combining repertoire that is most familiar (Vivaldi's Gloria) with a first performance of a newly edited work by Pergolesi - his magnificent Mass for double Choir and Orchestra.
The performance will be preceded by a talk give by Dr Andrew Woolley, editor of this new edition.
Details of the programme, booking etc. can be found here