Early Music Vancouver (EMV) is preparing for the 2022 Vancouver Bach Festival – Scottish Baroque and Other Traditions. The festival returns, in-person, from Tuesday, July 26 to Saturday, August 6 at venues around the city, including The Chan Centre, Christ Church Cathedral, Pyatt Hall, VanDusen Botanical Garden, The Wolf & Hound, and UBC’s Sage Bistro.
The 6th annual Festival explores the profound and entertaining fusion of Scottish traditional music and the music of the Baroque masters that emerged in the 17th century.
It is well known that J.S. Bach employed instrumentalists for his church performances who often also played in taverns. It’s also known that the music for popular country dances such as the gavotte and gigue (jig), were reimagined by ‘serious’ composers of the time for courtly circles. Scottish Baroque, a fusion of Scottish traditional music combined with the virtuosity and style of 17th and 18th century Italian music, was born in a pub in Edinburgh’s medieval Old Town, where, the music of Corelli sat side by side with the rhythmic drive of local reels and jigs. Musicians of the day would play both repertoires, with the same enthusiasm for each, using the same technique and instruments.
At this year’s Vancouver Bach Festival – Scottish Baroque and Other Traditions, audiences will hear traditional melodies weave throughout all of the concerts presented.
EMV welcomes Scottish Baroque experts David McGuinness and David Greenberg, as Festival Artists-in-Residence. Both artists have dedicated their careers to the study of the Italian and Scottish composers of the 17th and 18th century – a lively and vibrant time in Scotland’s musical history. David Greenberg also has a performing career as a Baroque violinist and Cape Breton fiddler. He is also a composer and arranger, and many of his tunes have been recorded by prominent Cape Breton musicians.
David McGuinness divides his time between historical Scottish music and contemporary work. He is a music producer and composer for television and BBC Radio, a Senior Lecturer in Music at the University of Glasgow and the director of Concerto Caledonia, based in Glasgow. Concerto Caledonia describe themselves as Scotland’s Early Music Group, committed to “bringing historically important early music back into circulation, and doing it with as much a sense of danger as of style.”
“Artists-in-Residence David McGuinness (Scotland) and David Greenberg (US/Canada) will make you want to get up and dance as they weave traditional tunes with baroque sonatas!” says EMV’s Artistic & Executive Director, Suzie LeBlanc.
“They will take us on a tour of the traditional folk music of Scotland and Cape Breton while other concerts in the Festival will take us to Acadia, Sweden, and Métis musical traditions. Join us and discover the hidden threads between these different cultural traditions and well-known Baroque works by Bach, Vivaldi, Corelli, Muffat, and Couperin.”
The lineup for the 2022 Vancouver Bach Festival – Scottish Baroque and Other Traditions includes opens and closes two special events book-ending a series of 13 concerts:
Opening Special Event: Rondeau | July 26 at 6:00 p.m. at Sage Bistro, UBC
Hosted by Canadian radio broadcaster and author Bill Richardson, this special event features Vancouver’s Poet Laureate Fiona Tinwei Lam, Lucas Harris (theorbo), and EMV Artists-in-Residence David Greenberg and David McGuiness. Rondeau will be an evening in support of EMV’s numerous initiatives such as the commissioning of new works, the acquisition of historical instruments, and the presentation of renowned early music artists from around the world.
Closing Special Event: Tea-Table Miscellany | August 6 at 12:00 p.m. at VanDusen Botanical Garden (Heron Lake)
The Tea-Table Miscellany is the first printed collection of Scottish songs and verse in the Scots dialectic, collected by 18th century poet Allan Ramsay. This special event opens features performances by soprano Ellen Torrie and tenor Isaiah Bell with Festival musicians directed by David McGuinness.
Find the details of the 2022 Vancouver Bach Festival – Scottish Baroque and Other Traditions concert line-up, show details and tickets online at earlymusic.bc.ca