Baroque Unwrapped 2016 | Kings Place

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Baroque Unwrapped 2016

  • Rachel Podger: Perla Barocca

    15 Sep

    Rachel Podger: Perla Barocca

    Baroque violinist Rachel Podger presents musical pearls of the Italian Baroque including famous Italian masters as well as lesser-known composers...
    Read moreBook Tickets

  • The Sixteen: Gems of the Italian and Portuguese Baroque

    16 Sep

    The Sixteen: Gems of the Italian and Portuguese Baroque

    Including Rebelo’s Panis Angelicus, Melgas’ Lamentations and Scarlatti’s virtuosic setting of the Stabat Mater...
    Read moreBook Tickets

  • Brodsky Quartet & David Hansen: Encountertenor

    13 Oct

    Brodsky Quartet & David Hansen: Encountertenor

    The eminent Brodsky Quartet team up with brilliant Australian counter-tenor David Hansen to explore some of the great castrato repertoire...
    Read moreBook Tickets

  • A Weekend of Excessively Good Taste

    24–26 Oct

    A Weekend of Excessively Good Taste

    Rachel Podger, Jonathan Manson, Eamonn Dougan, Edward Higginbottom and more explore the musical opulence of the grand siecle of the French Baroque...
    Read moreBook Tickets

  • Scarlatti, Vivaldi, Bach & Couperin

    15 Dec

    Scarlatti, Vivaldi, Bach & Couperin

    Iranian harpsichord virtuoso Mahan Esfahani and Israeli mandolinist Avi Avital join forces...
    Read moreBook Tickets



In Baroque Unwrapped, the eighth edition of our year-long series, we explore a period of seismic change and creativity in European music. A surge in travel led to a potent cross-fertilisation of musical styles, resulting in some of the greatest music ever written, the birth of opera, the rise of the virtuoso soloist, the apotheosis of court music, the first public concerts and the beginning of the symphony orchestra.

We put this fascinating period of high drama, extravagance and excess into context with concerts from the post-Renaissance period, right through Baroque masterpieces from Purcell, Rameau, Bach, Monteverdi and Vivaldi, to Bolivian greats and the works of female composers. As ever, we embrace composers who drew inspiration from our theme, from Mozart and Mendelssohn, to jazz improvisers, Metallica and Muse.

Enjoy over 50 concerts, talks and study days with a stellar line-up, featuring the Orchestra of Age of Enlightenment, Concerto Italiano, Avison and Feinstein Ensembles, Choir of King’s College, The Sixteen, Rachel Podger, Richard Tunnicliffe, Mahan Esfahani, David Hansen, Dame Emma Kirkby and many more.

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Music

Rachel Podger: Perla Barocca

Thursday, 15 September 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

The Italian composers of the mid-seventeeth century created rich and creative masterpieces that explored the exciting new possibilities for instrumental music. The Perla Barocca programme features lesser-known Italian baroque masterpieces that are both delightful and technically impressive, showcasing the musical pearls of the Italian Baroque.

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Music

The Sixteen: Gems of the Italian and Portuguese Baroque

Friday, 16 September 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

This dynamic programme of Italian and Portuguese Baroque music is at times reflective, at times uplifting and always inspired. The tour de force is Scarlatti's virtuosic setting of the Stabat Mater.

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Music

Fitzwilliam Quartet & Friends: Pergolesi's Stabat Mater + the Purcell Inspirations

Thursday, 29 September 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

The Fitzwilliam Quartet, playing on their 18th century baroque equipment and joined by three eminent international artists (Julia Doyle, Clare Wilkinson and Laurence Cummings), celebrate 'contemporary' music from three centuries.

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Music

Avison Ensemble: The Concerto in England – Handel and His Contemporaries

Friday, 30 September 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

In this fascinating survey of the concerto in 18th-century England, the Avison Ensemble explores some highlights of the genre, including two examples of the uniquely English phenomenon of the organ concerto, the one instrument common to all of tonight's composers.

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Interact

Study Day: Bolivian Baroque with Ashley Solomon & Piotr Nawrot

Saturday, 1 October 2016 - 10:30am / St Pancras Room

The study of the American music archives has changed our knowledge of musical culture in urban centres and missions between the 16th and 18th Centuries in the New World. Dr Piotr Nawrot and Professor Ashley Solomon will discuss the impact this music had on the local inhabitants and how the music developed over the 80 years...

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Music

Florilegium & Guests: Bolivian Baroque – Music from the Missions

Saturday, 1 October 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Today, two important collections of American mission music have been preserved. The first, which comes from the mission churches of San Rafael and Santa Ana, is kept in Concepción, Bolivia. The other, having been more recently found and organized, is a collection of musical manuscripts from the ancient Jesuit missions found in the area of the Moxo natives in Beni, Bolivia.

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Music

Brodsky Quartet & David Hansen: Encountertenor

Thursday, 13 October 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Audiences today are well-acquainted with the counter-tenor voice, but many of the operatic roles so often sung by these voices today were originally the domain of the male castrato. In this concert, the Brodsky Quartet and David Hansen explore some of the great castrato repertoire from Purcell, Handel and others.

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Music

Christoph Denoth & The Sacconi Quartet – Bach, Vivaldi & Boccherini

Thursday, 20 October 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Looking back through the long tradition of baroque music, one can find a treasure trove of fascinating lute pieces. Classical guitarist Christoph Denoth and The Sacconi Quartet together present a scintillating programme of baroque lute music in all its kaleidoscopic variety.

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Music

Vivaldi Rocks! – Gut Strings and Metal with O/Modernt Kammarorkester

Saturday, 22 October 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Experience Vivaldi’s concertos with the vibe of a Hammond organ, variations of La Folia (‘musical madness’) rocking Van Halen style improvised cadenzas, Metallica guitar solos played on amplified bassoon and much more!

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Music

Bach: The Musical Offering with Levon Chilingirian & Friends

Sunday, 13 November 2016 - 6:30pm / Hall One

Bach’s ‘Musical Offering’ is one of the most celebrated works in classical music. Levon Chilingirian leads a large chamber ensemble in this famous arrangement by German-American musicologist and Bach scholar, Hans Theodore David.

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Music

Rachel Podger, Steven Devine and Jonathan Manson: Suites et Sonates

Thursday, 24 November 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

A celebration of the Instrumental Music of the French baroque, when the new Italian Sonata was having an major influence of the younger generation of French composers. The programme includes both suites and sonatas demonstrating the unique sound of the French Baroque.

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Music

Instruments of Time and Truth & Edward Higginbottom: Le coucher du Soleil – Music from the last years of Louis XIV and the Dauphin

Friday, 25 November 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Intimate music for church and salon from the last years of Louis XIV and those of the Dauphin; this programme will explore the moment in French musical life when a purely national style gave way to something richer and distinctly mixed.

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Music

Choral Workshop for amateur singers with Eamonn Dougan

Saturday, 26 November 2016 - 11:00am / Hall Two

Eamonn Dougan, curator of 'A Weekend of Excessively Good Taste', and Associate Conductor of The Sixteen, leads a choral workshop for amateur singers working on some gems of the French Baroque from Charpentier, Rameau and Bouzignac.

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Film

Film Screening: 'Tous les matins du monde' starring Gérard Depardieu as Marin Marais

Saturday, 26 November 2016 - 2:30pm / Hall Two

Tous les matins du monde is a 1991 French film based on the book of the same name. Set during the reign of Louis XIV, the film shows the eminent musician Marin Marais looking back on his young life when he tried to become a pupil of Monsieur de Sainte-Colombe, and features much music of the period, especially that for the viola da gamba.

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Music

Hymne à la Vierge – Charpentier and His Contemporaries

Saturday, 26 November 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

A programme of Charpentier's works in praise of the Blessed Virgin Mary, centred around two substantial works composed while he worked at the court of the great patroness of the Arts, Mademoiselle de Guise. These Marian works are interspersed with instrumental works by Francois Couperin, Marin Marais and Robert de Visée.

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Music

Red Priest – Better Red than Dead: 20 Years of Baroque Revolution!

Sunday, 4 December 2016 - 6:30pm / Hall One

Red Priest celebrates its 20th anniversary season with ‘Better Red than Dead’ – a retrospective concert of the highlights of the group’s colourful career, together with its latest musical creations. Expect an evening of baroque brilliance with a modern twist.

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Music

Concerto Italiano: Hidden Gems – Trio Sonatas

Friday, 9 December 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Concerto Italiano has revolutionized our perception of 17th and 18th century Italian music establishing itself with critics and audiences as the finest ensemble of its kind in Italy today. Their vibrant performances and recordings of baroque masterpieces have reclaimed, for modern audiences, works that have languished in obscurity for centuries.

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Interact, Music

Come and Sing – Bach Magnificat and other seasonal works

Saturday, 10 December 2016 - 2:00pm / Hall Two

As an upbeat to tonight’s concert we will be working on JS Bach’s great ‘Magnificat’, one of the composers most popular and exuberant choral works – a fitting and joyful celebration for the Christmas season. Plus works by Gabrieli, Mendelssohn, Handel and John Gardner.

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Music

Oxford Baroque – Bach's Christmas Vespers

Saturday, 10 December 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Oxford Baroque present a unique, historically informed performance of JS Bach’s festive Magnificat, in its earlier E-flat version. The programme also features a magnificent cantata by Johann Kuhnau, Bach’s predecessor in Leipzig, formerly mistakenly attributed to Bach as Cantata 142.

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Music

Mahan Esfahani & Avi Avital: Scarlatti, Vivaldi, Bach & Couperin

Thursday, 15 December 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Iranian harpsichord virtuoso Mahan Esfahani and Israeli mandolinist Avi Avital join forces to explore music written for each instrument and duo transcriptions from the Baroque repertoire which interests them both.

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Music

Noel: A Christmas Celebration with Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

Monday, 19 December 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

A programme that focuses on the early German Baroque repertoire, featuring selection of works by JS Bach’s predecessors, most notably Michael Praetorius and Heinrich Schütz alongside some of the unfairly underrated composers, who represent the flowering of the new Northern European style as a result of the Protestant Reformation.

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Music

Dunedin Consort – Handel's Messiah

Tuesday, 20 December 2016 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Come and hear the most famous oratorio of all times from celebrated Scottish baroque ensemble, Dunedin Consort with its soloist-led singers and period instrumentalists, under the direction of the eminent John Butt.

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