Handel and Haydn Society Branches Out with Concerts Across Northeastern MA, Beg. Today

Handel and Haydn Society Branches Out with Concerts Across Northeastern MA, Beg. Today

Handel and Haydn Society musicians will present three chamber-sized performances to audiences across Northeastern Massachusetts. H+H's expanded presence stems from strategic initiatives to broaden H+H's audience as it prepares for its upcoming Bicentennial Season.

The concerts will take place within a span of a few days and showcase the full breadth and talent of H+H's singers and instrumentalists. Members of the Period Instrument Orchestra and Chorus will perform a wide range of repertoire, from the choral heights of German Baroque composer Heinrich Schütz to the 19th-century Romantic sounds of Felix Mendelssohn.

Today's program H+H at the Peabody Essex Museum coincides with the opening day of the exhibition "Turner & the Sea." In the first full-scale examination of Joseph Mallord William Turner's lifelong preoccupation with the sea, the Salem museum's exhibition features iconic works spanning the painter's career. To celebrate, mezzo-soprano and museum director Mary Gerbi and baritone Bradford Gleim join violinist Abigail Karr and fortepianist Ian Watson for songs and music by Haydn, Mendelssohn, and British composers working at the same time as J.M.W. Turner.

The next day, members of the Handel and Haydn Society Chorus perform a concert of early American a cappella songs at the Concord Museum. This specially tailored program connects with the just-opened exhibition "The Shot Heard Round the World: April 19, 1775" with music heard during that same time period. Christopher Hogwood Historically Informed Performance Fellow Teresa Neff will provide introduction and commentary during the concert.

On Tuesday, June 3, H+H returns to historic King's Chapel for a free lunchtime concert of Schütz's Musikalische Exequien, Op. 7. Back Bay Chorale Music Director Scott Allen Jarrett will lead the Handel and Haydn Society Chorus in the 35-minute program that takes place at the same location as H+H's first concert in 1815.

CONCERT INFORMATION

H+H at the Peabody Essex Museum

Saturday, May 31, 2014 at 3pm

161 Essex Street, Salem; Morse Auditorium

$18 general admission; $15 seniors; $12 students (with valid ID); members free

H+H at the Concord Museum

Sunday, June 1, 2014 at 2pm

200 Lexington Road, Concord

$20 members; $25 non-members (includes museum admission)

H+H at King's Chapel

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at 12.15pm

58 Tremont Street, Boston; free admission

ABOUT THE HANDEL AND HAYDN SOCIETY: Founded in Boston in 1815, the Handel and Haydn Society (H+H) is considered America's oldest continuously performing arts organization. H+H will celebrate its Bicentennial in 2015 with a series of special concerts and initiatives to honor 200 years of music making. Under Artistic Director Harry Christophers' leadership, H+H's mission is to enrich life and influence culture by performing Baroque and Classical music at the highest levels of artistic excellence, and by providing engaging, accessible, and broadly inclusive music education and training activities. H+H's Period Instrument Orchestra and Chorus present live and recorded historically informed performances of this repertoire in ways that stimulate the musical and culture life of the Greater Boston community and beyond.

H+H's esteemed tradition of innovation and excellence began in the 19th century with the American premieres of Handel's Messiah, Haydn's Creation, Verdi's Requiem, and Bach's St. Matthew Passion. Today, H+H is widely known through its local subscription series, tours, concert broadcasts on 99.5 WCRB and National Public Radio, and recordings. H+H's first recording with Harry Christophers, Mozart Mass in C Minor, was issued in September 2010 on the CORO label. Subsequent releases include Mozart Requiem (2011), and Coronation Mass (2012), as well as the critically acclaimed Haydn, Vol. 1 (September 2013) and the best-selling Joy to the World: An American Christmas (October 2013).

As a 21st-century performing arts organization, H+H's primary roles are to perform and educate, and to serve as a resource center and community partner. The Karen S. and George D. Levy Education Program, established in 1985, reaches 10,000 children each year in underserved Greater Boston communities. H+H also maintains partnerships with cultural and higher educational institutions.