Ars Lyrica Houston to Present HEART AND SOUL German Baroque Program with Ryland Angel, 2/3

Grammy-nominated early music ensemble Ars Lyrica Houston presents "Heart and Soul", a program of devotional works from the German Baroque for voice, strings, and organ on Sunday, February 3, 2013 at 6 pm at St Philip Presbyterian Church. The concert features renowned British counter-tenor Ryland Angel, Ars Lyrica Artistic Director Matthew Dirst on the newly installed Baroque-style Fritts organ, and a quintet of Ars Lyrica string players. Tickets are available at the door for $15.

"It's a program that explores the richly expressive repertory of 17th-century German sacred music for voice and instruments. This was the first great flowering of art music in the Protestant church: sophisticated yet heartfelt music that encapsulates the joys and sorrows of the early modern age."- Artistic Director Matthew Dirst describes the repertoire.

The "Heart and Soul" program will be recorded and published in 2013: this will be the fourth commercial release for the Houston- based early music ensemble in the last three years. Previous Ars Lyrica recordings garnered considerable international acclaim: Gramophone, the leading journal of the classical recording industry, praised Ars Lyrica's debut CD for its "exemplary skill and taste," the ensemble's musicians for their "impassioned performance" of never-before recorded works by Alessandro Scarlatti; while Ars Lyrica's world première recording of Johann Adolf Hasse's Marc Antonio e Cleopatra, was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Opera 2011.

On Saturday, February 16 at 6pm, Ars Lyrica will hold a benefit concert and dinner at a private River Oaks residence. The event, entitled "Songs from the Heart", will feature Ryland Angel in Baroque and crossover repertoire and will help underwrite the production of this new recording project. For more information and reservations please call Kinga Ferguson at 281-636-4951.

About the "Heart and Soul" Program

Vocal works:

Christoph Bernhard, "Was betrubst du dich, meine Seele"

Heinrich Schütz, "Was hast du verwirket"

Philipp Erlebach, "Trocknet euch ihr heißen Zähren"

Johann Michael Bach, "Auf, laßt uns den Herren loben"

Instrumental works:

Dietrich Buxtehude: selections from the Sonatas Op 1 & 2

Samuel Scheidt: Chorale Partita on "Warum betrübst du dich, meine Seele" (organ)

Founded in 1998 by harpsichordist and conductor Matthew Dirst, Ars Lyrica Houston is a Texas-based ensemble that performs world-class Baroque music on period instruments. Ars Lyrica's world premiere recording of J.A. Hasse's Marc Antonio e Cleopatra brought the ensemble its first Grammy nomination for "a thrilling performance that glows in its quieter moments and sparkles with vitality" (Early Music America). Ars Lyrica's distinctive programming, drawn from the rich chamber and dramatic repertories of the 17th and 18th centuries, "sets the agenda for imaginative period instrument programming in Houston," according to the Houston Chronicle. The ensemble's first commercial release, on Naxos International, features the world première recordings of Alessandro Scarlatti's La Concettione della Beata Vergine and Euridice dall'Inferno. This disc brought international recognition to the ensemble: Gramophone, the leading journal of the classical recording industry, praised this CD for its "exemplary skill and taste," and Ars Lyrica's musicians for their "impassioned performance" of never-before recorded works. Ars Lyrica's latest Sono Luminus recording, of Domenico Scarlatti's comic intermezzo La Dirindina and his chamber cantata Pur nel sonno, was released in August 2012. For more information visit

Born on St. Cecilia's Day, Ryland Angel was a chorister at Bristol Cathedral and a lay-clerk at Chester Cathedral. He trained as a lawyer before deciding to pursue a professional career as a singer in 1991 when he started studying with David Mason. Since then, Mr. Angel has received a Grammy nomination He has performed with William Christie, Rene Jacobs, Ivor Bolton, Roy Goodman, Christophe Rousset, Philippe Herreweghe, Christophe Coin, Gabriel Garrido, Cantus Köln, Le Concert Spirituel, Le Parlement de Musique, the Ensemble of Early Music of New York and Ensemble La Fenice. This season he looks forward to performing with the National Chorale in the Handel Messiah at Avery Fisher Hall. Mr. Angel has a new CD with Rick Errickson and the Bach Players of New York City of Buxtehude Cantatas about to be released and is featured on the Grammy Nominated Bobby McFerrin "Vocabularies" (Universal) album. This season Mr. Angel performs in Charpentier's The Prodigal Son with Musica Sacra at Avery Fisher Hall in New York's Lincoln Center.

Recent engagements include concerts of Purcell with Herve Niquet and Le Concert Spirituel, Giove in IL RITORNE D'ULISSE IN PATRIA, led by Christophe Rousset in Paris, Leipzig and Toulouse, Adrasto in IL SANT ALESSIO with WIlliam Christie and Les Arts Florrisants in Paris, New York and London, recorded for EMI/Virgin Classics, and Handel Messiah at St. Thomas Cathedral in New York, directed by John Scott, and at Carnegie Hall with Musica Sacra. As well, Ryland has also released his debut EMI classical crossover disc in the US, with appearances on Good Morning America and PBS.

Mr. Angel has performed with the English National Opera in Monteverdi's ORFEO, Desmarest's VENUS AND ADONIS conducted by Christophe Rousset at Opera de Nancy Buggen in Purcell's THE FAIRY QUEEN and sang the role of Fritz in the world premiere of Gavin Bryars'DOCTOR OX'S EXPERIMENT, directed by Atom Egoyan. He performed the title role in Handel's AMADIGI DI GAULA in Karlsruhe with Roy Goodman, Bertarido RODELINDA with Il Combattimento in the Carre Theatre Amsterdam and Zephyr APOLLO AND HYACINTH with the Classical Opera Company in London.

He has performed Monteverdi's SELVA MORALE with William Christie and Les Arts Florissants, the world premiere of DOUXMENSONGES at the Opéra National de Paris Palais Garnier with Jiri Kylian and William Christie, as well as an appearance at London's South Bank Centre in CARMINA BURANA conducted by Mark Ermler. Mr. Angel sang in TOLOMEO with Muziektheater Transparant in Antwerp, the title role in RADAMISTO for Opera Theatre of St. Louis, in concert performances of Handel's ISRAEL IN EGYPTwith Graeme Jenkins in Dallas, the play of DANIEL for the Spoleto Festival in Italy and Athamas SEMELE for Oper Köln. He has also appeared in AGRIPPINA with New York City Opera, and as Oberon A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM for Florentine Opera under Steuart Bedford. He recently returned to English National Opera as Buggen THE FAIRY QUEEN, a part he has also sung for the Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona.

Other engagements include recordings of Charpentier Te Deum with Le Concert Spirituel, Scarlatti Cantatas with Les Folies Francaises, works of Clarke and Purcell with the St Paul Chamber Orchestra and Nicholas McGegan and Messiah with both the Handel and Haydn Society of Boston and the Singapore Symphony Orchestra conducted by Lim Yau. He has sung Tolomeo GIULIO CESARE for Utah Opera and Opera Colorado, and Oberon A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM for Lyric Opera of Kansas City, and made his debut with the Philharmonia Baroque of San Francisco in a Scarlatti program conducted by Nicholas McGegan. He can be heard on the movie soundtracks of Henry 4th and Machete.

Recordings include: "Counter-tenor Duets and Song" -Purcell (Deux-elles); Te Deum - Charpentier (Glossa); The Cecilian Vespers -D. Scarlatti (Avie); "Totus Amore" -Solo Cantatas of Scarlatti, Stradella and Bassani (Deux Elles); Ballet Comique de La Royne -Beaujoyeaux (K317); Messe des Morts -Charpentier (Naxos); "Motets of Lorenzani" (Naxos); "A Baroque Christmas" (Ex Cathedra); "A Bohemian Christmas" (Ex Cathedra); Polish Baroque -Pekiel and his contemporaries (Ambronay editions); Recital CD with Fort Worth Early Music (now Texas Camerata);Venus and Adonis -Desmarest (Ambroisie); O magnum Mysterium -Tiffany Consort (MSR Classics - Grammy nominated); "In Sure and Certain Hope" -N. White (MSR classics); "Ryland Angel" -Ryland Angel (EMI) (appearances on 'Good Morning America' and PBS); "The New Voice of Christmas" (KOCH). DVD's and Films: Sant' Alessio (EMI/Virgin); Le Petit Prince (IMax); The Fairy Queen (Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona); Etoiles -Dancers of the Paris Opera Ballet; "Heavenly Voices" (EMI/PBS TV special). Plus, coming soon: a new CD of Buxtehude and Bach for Countertenor with Rick Erickson and the Bach Players.

Ars Lyrica Houston: "Heart and Soul" with Ryland Angel. Tickets at the door: $15. Sunday, February 3, 2013 at 6 pm at St Philip Presbyterian Church, 4807 San Felipe, Houston, TX. Concert information: 713-622-7443.

Ars Lyrica Houston: "Songs from the Heart" benefit concert is set for Saturday, February 16 at 6pm at the Private River Oaks Residence. For benefit concert reservations and details, call 281-636-4951.

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