October 15, 2017 For Immediate Release

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS

1326 Dietrich Oaks Drive, Ballwin, MO, 63021 | A Not-For-Profit 501(c)3 Organization
http://collegiumvocaleofsaintlouis.org/ | facebook.com/CVSTL

October 15, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dr. Bruce Carvell, CVSL Artistic Director
(314) 650-3817 or stltenor@att.net

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS Presents
CELEBRATING TELEMANN: A Commemoration of the 250th Anniversary of His Death

ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI – THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is proud to present “CELEBRATING TELEMANN: A Commemoration of the 250th Anniversary of His Death,” on Sunday, October 15, 2017 at 3 pm. The concert will be performed at First Congregational Church, 6501 Wydown Boulevard, Clayton, Missouri 63105. A pre-concert lecture will be presented by Dr. Bruce Carvell at 2:30 pm. Suggested donation of $10; free parking on the adjacent church lot.

Georg Phillip Telemann (1681-1767) was one of the most prolific composers of all time, according to his surviving oeuvre. He was held in the highest regard by his contemporaries; comparing very favorably with his colleagues, J. S. Bach and G. F. Handel. All during 2017, the 250th anniversary of Telemann’s death, the musical world is commemorating the work of this master.

The Collegium Vocale of St. Louis is proud to make its contribution to this celebration by presenting an overview of his compositions, which will include a number of St. Louis premieres. The program mixes both sacred and secular works, including several arias and a marvelous cantata for soprano and harpsichord, plus a lovely cantata for alto, two recorders and basso continuo. Another high point will be a performance of a little-known piece, Der Schulmeister, not the often-recorded version, but one that features a trio sonata for violins and continuo with a running commentary sung throughout. The concert will conclude with a masterful setting of Psalm 6, Ach Herr, strafe mich nicht, for voices and strings.

Vocalists Nancy Luetzow, Stephanie Ruggles, Willard Cobb, Dr. Bruce Carvell, and Nathan Ruggles will be accompanied by noted local musicians performing on period instruments tuned to baroque pitch.

WHAT: CELEBRATING TELEMANN: A Commemoration of the 250th Anniversary of His Death
Performed by THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS

WHEN: Sunday, October 15, 2017, 3:00 p.m.

WHERE: First Congregational Church
6501 Wydown Boulevard
Clayton, Missouri, 63105
Suggested donation $10 / Free parking

Collegium Vocale of St. Louis is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization.

May 21, 2017 For Immediate Release

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS

1326 Dietrich Oaks Drive, Ballwin, MO, 63021 | A Not-For-Profit 501(c)3 Organization
http://collegiumvocaleofsaintlouis.org/ | facebook.com/CVSTL

May 21, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dr. Bruce Carvell, CVSL Artistic Director
(314) 650-3817 or stltenor@att.net

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS Presents
Collegium Vocale of St. Louis Performs
For the New World: Music from the Guatemala City Archives

ST. LOUIS, MO, – The Collegium Vocale of St. Louis is proud to present “For the New World: Music from the Guatemala City Archives,” featuring eighteenth-century music from Central America, on Sunday, May 21, 2017 at 3:00 p.m. The concert will be presented at St. Cecilia Catholic Church, 5418 Louisiana Ave., St. Louis, Missouri. Admission is free. Parking is available on the adjacent church lot.

1534 saw the founding of Guatemala City, now called Antigua, Guatemala, and the construction of the first Cathedral de Santiago there. Along with Mexico City, this became one of the most important centers of sacred music in New Spain. Latin American music composed during the colonial period has become more available in the past twenty years and has been described as the “new frontier in music history.” The Collegium Vocale program presents music by several composers, including the Italian-born Ignatio de Jerusalem, Mexican-born Manuel de Zumaya and Gregorio Soberanis, and Guatemalan-born Manuel de Quiròs and Rafael Castellanos. All of these pieces have been newly edited for this concert and will be heard for the very first time in St. Louis. We hope you will join with us in experiencing this fascinating and beautiful music in the architectural splendor of St. Cecilia’s.

About The Collegium Vocale of St. Louis:

Founded in 1997, The COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is an ensemble devoted to presenting historically informed performances of a diverse and wide-ranging repertory of 17th- and 18th-century music for voices and instruments.

Collegium Vocale of St. Louis is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization.

Why Graupner?

I first discovered the music of Christoph Graupner in 2009 in an article in Early Music America written for the upcoming 250th Anniversary of his death in 1760. As the Artistic Director of the Collegium Vocale of St. Louis, the only ensemble in St. Louis focused on historically informed performance of Baroque vocal chamber music, I am always on the lookout for interesting music for the group to perform. Initially, I was attracted by the fact that his sacred music was very well suited to the resources of our ensemble, that it was a largely untapped body of interesting work, and that it was readily accessible on the Internet. As a musicologist, I was very excited to work from original sources in preparing our performing editions. This is the fourth concert of Graupner cantatas presented by the Collegium Vocale under my direction since 2010. I find Graupner’s cantatas to be endlessly fascinating in their musical inventiveness, colorful orchestrations, and sensitivity to the text. Graupner, held in high regard in his own day, deserves to be much better known today. This is music that delights the intellect and sings to the soul.

Bruce Carvell
Artistic Director
Collegium Vocale of St. Louis

On Sunday, February 26, Collegium Vocale of Saint Louis will perform Four Sacred Cantatas by Christoph Graupner. The concert begins on 3:00 PM but Introductory lecture starts @ 2:30 PM.Do not miss this uplifting performance!

January 17, 2017 For Immediate Release

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS

1326 Dietrich Oaks Drive, Ballwin, MO, 63021 | A Not-For-Profit 501(c)3 Organization
http://collegiumvocaleofsaintlouis.org/ | facebook.com/CVSTL

January 17, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dr. Bruce Carvell, CVSL Artistic Director
(314) 650-3817 or stltenor@att.net

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS Presents
Collegium Vocale of St. Louis Performs First U.S. Concert of Little Known Works by Christoph Graupner

ST. LOUIS, MO, – The Collegium Vocale of St. Louis is proud to present Lift Your Eyes to Heaven: Four Sacred Cantatas by Christoph Graupner, on Sunday, February 26, 2017 at 3:00 p.m. This unique musical event will feature the first modern performances of these Baroque masterpieces by an important contemporary of J. S. Bach. The concert will be presented at Village Lutheran Church, 9237 Clayton Road, St. Louis, Missouri and includes an introductory lecture by Dr. Bruce Carvell at 2:30 p.m.

Christoph Graupner, a contemporary of J. S. Bach, was a prolific and highly regarded composer in his day. After a long period of neglect, Graupner’s music is again being performed around the world, here in St. Louis by the renowned Collegium Vocale of St. Louis. This concert offers patrons a rare opportunity to hear this marvelous music in a live performance.

Graupner, an innovative and imaginative composer, has a distinctive style that demonstrates great invention and variety in his approach to form, text-setting, and instrumentation, including solo appearances of instruments like the bassoon and viola, instruments not usually featured. The four cantatas being presented are newly edited from Graupner’s manuscripts especially for this concert.

To assure authenticity in performance, The Collegium Vocale of St. Louis includes an ensemble of top local instrumentalists playing Baroque string and wind instruments tuned to period pitch.

Admission to the concert is free; however, to support the arts and future performances, a minimum suggested donation of $10 will be gratefully accepted. Free parking is available on the adjacent church lot.

What:
Four Sacred Cantatas by Christoph Graupner (1683-1760)
Performed by THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS
Introductory Lecture by Dr. Bruce Carvell at 2:30 pm
When:
Sunday, February 26, 2017, 3:00 p.m.
Where:
Village Lutheran Church
9237 Clayton Road
Saint Louis, Missouri, 63124

About The Collegium Vocale of St. Louis:

Founded in 1997, The COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is an ensemble devoted to presenting historically informed performances of a diverse and wide-ranging repertory of 17th- and 18th-century music for voices and instruments.

Collegium Vocale of St. Louis is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization.

Oct. 14, 2016 For Immediate Release

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS

1326 Dietrich Oaks Drive, Ballwin, MO, 63021 | A Not-For-Profit 501(c)3 Organization
http://collegiumvocaleofsaintlouis.org/

April 14, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dr. Bruce Carvell, CVSL Artistic Director
(314) 650-3817 or stltenor@att.net

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS Presents
Music for Rome!

Sunday, October 23, 2016, 2:00 p.m.

Basilica of St. Louis (The Old Cathedral)
209 Walnut Street
Saint Louis, Missouri, 63102
Free admission / Free parking

ST. LOUIS, MO, – THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is proud to present “Music for Rome!” a concert of sacred Italian music performed in Catholic churches in Rome in the early 18th century. The concert will be presented on Sunday, October 23, 2016 at 2:00 p.m. at the newly renovated Basilica of St. Louis (The Old Cathedral), 209 Walnut St. St. Louis 63102. Free-will donations are appreciated. Ample free parking is available on the adjacent church lot.

Rome has been the center of the Catholic church for centuries, always attracting the very best musicians and composers.  Our program consists of outstanding examples of music that would have been heard in the churches of Rome.  Included on our program are motets of Palestrina and Vittoria, representing the older polyphonic tradition.  Also to be performed are solo motets and cantatas by noted composers Alessandro Stradella and Leonardo Vinci, typical of the ‘modern’ music of the Baroque period.  Of special interest will be the performance of the celebrated Magnificat of Francesco Durante, which was one of the most admired compositions of the early 18th century.  This piece will be performed in a five-part version with strings that has been newly edited especially for this program.  The singers will be accompanied by an ensemble of period-appropriate instruments.

The Collegium is excited to perform this program in the resplendent beauty and resonant acoustics of the renovated Old Cathedral, which holds a special place in our local history.  The recent nine-million dollar renovation of the Old Cathedral on the Mississippi riverfront included careful repairs and replacement of interior and exterior treatments with special attention to original design elements. This is a rare opportunity to hear this glorious music while experiencing the visual and aural beauty of one of St. Louis’ most important landmarks.

The COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is an ensemble devoted to presenting historically informed performances of a diverse and wide-ranging repertory of 17th- and 18th-century music and has been presenting concerts to St. Louis audiences for over twenty years

 

 

April 14, 2016 For Immediate Release

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS

1326 Dietrich Oaks Drive, Ballwin, MO, 63021 | A Not-For-Profit 501(c)3 Organization
http://collegiumvocaleofsaintlouis.org/

April 14, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dr. Bruce Carvell, CVSL Artistic Director
(314) 650-3817 or stltenor@att.net

THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF SAINT LOUIS Presents
O PRIMAVERA: Baroque Music of Spring

Sunday, April 24, 2016, 2:00 p.m.

Christ Church Cathedral, 1210 Locust Street
Saint Louis, Missouri, 63103
Free admission / Free parking

ST. LOUIS, MO, – THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is pleased to present “O PRIMAVERA: Baroque Music of Spring,” a concert of madrigals and songs from Italy and England in the 17th and 18th centuries, accompanied by period instruments: recorder, theorbo, cello, and harpsichord. The concert will be presented on Sunday, April 24, 2016 at 2:00 p.m. at Christ Church Cathedral, 1210 Locust Street, St. Louis, Missouri, 63103. Free admission and free parking on the adjacent church lot.

The program features several settings of Giovanni Battista Guarini’s famous poem, O primavera, two madrigals by Claudio Monteverdi and Heinrich Schütz, as well as solo settings by Luzzascho Luzzaschi and Raffaelo Rontani. The 18th century is represented by a duet by Alessandro Stradella, a duet cantata by Alessandro Scarlatti, and an anonymous cantata for contralto, recorder, and harpsichord. The program also includes an English song, The Bashful Lover, and a delightful madrigal by Thomas Weelkes. Many of these pieces will be heard in St. Louis for the very first time.

The venue, Christ Church Cathedral, is a fine example of Gothic Revival architecture complete with a belfry tower flanked by gargoyles. In operation since Christmas Day of 1867 and now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Christ Church Cathedral is the seat of the oldest Episcopal diocese west of the Mississippi River.

Founded in 1996, THE COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is an ensemble devoted to presenting historically informed performances of a diverse and wide-ranging repertory of 17th- and 18th-century music for voices and instruments.

Four Sacred Cantatas by J S Bach

“Four Sacred Cantatas by J S Bach”
February 28, 2016, 3 pm
Village Lutheran Church, 9237 Clayton Rd, 63124
Pre-concert lecture by Music Director, Dr. Bruce Carvell – 2:30 pm
Free Admission
Ample parking on the adjacent church lot

Collegium Vocale of Saint Louis
1996 – 2016
Celebrating 20 Years!

Program Notes on Buried Treasure: Unpublished Gems of the German Courts, 1700-1750

Program Notes — Sunday, October 25, 2015

Baroque Chamber Ensemble
A staggering amount of music was composed during the eighteenth century. While much of what was written by Vivaldi, J. S. Bach, and G. F. Handel has been edited and issued in academic editions, other pieces by them and their contemporaries have continued to exist only in library-held manuscripts. The digital age has brought new life to some of this music as copies become available on the Internet. All of the music heard on today’s program has been transcribed and edited from these digital reproductions of the autograph and manuscript copies currently available on the Internet. The principal source for these works is the University and State Library in Darmstadt, Germany. The Landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt, Ernst Ludwig (1667-1739), having aspirations of rivaling the cultural circumstances of Louis XIV of France at Versailles, hired some of the best musicians in Germany for his musical establishment and, as a side benefit, accumulated one of the most important music manuscript collections in Germany. However, these have not been heard since because the tendency of many musicologists is to focus on major figures of that time.

The cantata, “Posa d’un faggio all’ ombra,” was composed by Giovanni Alberto Ristori at the command of the Princess Anne Amalia, daughter of Frederick Augustus III of Saxony, and was sung by her to celebrate the Name Day of the King, her father. It probably was composed around 1735. Ristori was a noted Italian harpsichordist who spent most of his professional life working for the rulers of Saxony, who held court in Dresden and Warsaw. This work is unusual in that much of the harpsichord part is written out – chiefly preludes, postludes, and interludes – features that were customarily left for the keyboard player to improvise. This may have been done to accommodate the Princess, who was still a teenager and not a veteran singer. Ristori himself undoubtedly played the harpsichord part at the first Royal performance. The edition we are using today is drawn from the autograph copy held by the State and University Library in Dresden.

In 1709, Ernst Ludwig hired Christoph Graupner (1683-1760), a famous harpsichord player, away from the Hamburg Opera. Graupner then served as Director of Music at the Darmstadt court from 1711 until his death. Along with composing an enormous quantity of music that is just now being brought to wider attention, Graupner was responsible for organizing chamber music concerts every Sunday afternoon and on other occasions when requested by the Landgrave. It was also his responsibility to provide music for festive occasions, such as the Landgrave’s Name Day and Birthday. His cantata, “M’invita a la caccia,” was composed as a Prologue to a 1719 revival of the pastoral opera, “La constanza vince l’Inganno,” perhaps for such an occasion. The two arias we are performing today, are fully in the Italian style popular throughout Europe in the 18th century. The characters are drawn from Classical mythology and each aria is written in the da capo form that is in two sections, the first of which is repeated.

Johann Gottlieb Graun was one of the best violinists of his time in Germany. He was the brother of Karl Heinrich Graun (1704-1759), who was one of the premier opera composers in Germany, a contemporary of Handel and Hasse. J. G. Graun studied violin with J. G. Pisendl (1687-1775), who was the concertmaster of the famous orchestra in Dresden and who had studied violin with Giuseppe Tartini(1692-1770) in Italy. Graun’s cantata, “Ecco à voi, cari sassi,” heard on our program today, must have been held in some regard, for it exists in several manuscript copies from the 18th century, chiefly in libraries at Berlin, Dresden, and Darmstadt. The text was also set earlier in the 18th century both by Francesco Mancini, a Neapolitan composer, and by Emanuele, Baron d’Astora, another Italian composer. Graun’s cantata was probably composed sometime around 1750, based on its stylistic qualities, and was premiered in Dresden. Our performance edition is drawn from a copy held in the archives at Darmstadt.

The cantata by Antonio Caldara, “Non v’e pena ne l’amore,” was written and probably first performed in courts where Caldara was employed, either in Vienna or Dresden. It only survives only as a manuscript copy held in Darmstadt, upon which our edition is based. It was originally scored for voice, basso continuo, flute, and chalumeau, an early forerunner of the clarinet; however, it will be performed today with a violin playing the chalumeau part. Such substitutions were not uncommon during the 18th century. The chalumeau enjoyed its greatest popularity in Vienna and northern Germany, although Vivaldi also composed pieces for it. The form of this cantata is typical of the Italian cantata at this time: recitative, aria, recitative, aria.

The composer of Apollo in Tempe is uncertain and is probably not Giovanni Porta, as cited. However, one of only two manuscript copies of this work that exist, the one in Dresden, attributes this work to Porta, who was a Neapolitan composer working in Rome and Venice. It is clearly an Italian work. Its subject matter revolves around the arrival of the Greek God, Apollo, in the Valley of Tempe in Greece. Its intent is to flatter the cultural achievements and power of the Landgrave. Both surviving editions have been closely examined for this concert and interesting edits can be observed. The Darmstadt copy, the source of our edition, seems to have been reworked in the 18th century. A lengthy overture has been added; one of the characters has been rewritten from an alto to a high soprano and was given three new arias. Also the quartet has been extended by an extra 100 measures or so, a full third longer than its original length. In the opera of this period, any duet, trio, or quartet is very rare, especially one of this length. The most likely source of these revisions is Ernst Christian Hesse (1676-1762), a noted viola da gamba player hired by the Landgrave in 1698. Hesse served as Director of Music at court from 1707 to 1709. Trained as a lawyer, he also served as Secretary to the War Council for the Landgrave.

The Landgrave paid for Hesse to study in Paris and sent him to Italy for further study as well. Hesse’s second wife, Johanna Elisabeth Döbricht, a high soprano, was regarded as the best in Germany. While it was not unusual at that time to rewrite opera parts to suit a particular cast of singers, the fact that the part of Dorinda is the part that gains the most in opportunity for display in the revisions suggests that Hesse was looking out for his wife’s interests. One more interesting feature is that the words of the opening chorus are changed from, “Viva Apollo” to “Viva Ernesto.” There is a note in the Darmstadt archive that the work was performed as part of a celebration on the Landgrave’s Name Day, although which year is not mentioned. It may have been intended for 1724. A number of mysteries about this long-buried piece remain.

From manuscript to music…

There are two very interesting features found in the scores of today’s program. In the Graun cantata, the string parts for the opening accompanied recitative include vocal cues to help the ensemble stay more closely together. This is something often done in modern editions, but it is very rare to see it in original parts of this period. It is unknown whether this is a feature of Graun’s original composition or something added for the performance in Darmstadt. The pitches of the vocal part are notated on the upper staff in soprano clef.

Equally interesting is the written-out keyboard part for the Ristori cantata. As mentioned above, such matters were usually left to be improvised on the spot. Note that both the right hand of the keyboard part and the voice part are found on the upper staff of the score and that when the voice comes in, the keyboard has only a bass part over which he improvises the accompaniment. Additionally, the right hand part is notated in treble clef, while the voice part is in soprano clef.

© Dr. Bruce Carvell, Oct 2015

Buried Treasure: Unpublished Gems from the German Courts, 1700-1735

The COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is proud to present “Buried Treasure: Unpublished Gems from the German Courts, 1700-1750,” a concert of spectacular secular cantatas and arias newly edited for this performance. The concert will be performed on Sunday, October 25, 2015 at 3:00 p.m. at the First Congregational Church of St. Louis, 6501 Wydown Blvd., Clayton, MO, 63105. Free admission and free parking on the adjacent church lot.

This program highlights vocal chamber music composed and performed in several important German courts in the early and mid-18th century that may not have been presented since the composers themselves were the performers. The concert will feature solo cantatas by Antonio Caldara, Johann Gottlieb Graun, and Giovanni Alberto Ristori, which represent some of the finest music composed and performed at the imperial court in Vienna and the royal courts in Berlin and Dresden, all important musical centers of the time.

This is a rare opportunity to hear this music performed live in concert for the first time in over 200 hundred years. The singers will be accompanied by an ensemble of period-appropriate instruments in a beautiful venue that offers a glorious acoustic in which to experience this fine repertory.

» St. Louis Post Dispatch: Collegium Vocale performs Baroque treasures rescued from obscurity

Celebrate St. Louis!

Press Release October 26, 2014

The COLLEGIUM VOCALE OF ST. LOUIS is proud to present ”Celebrate St. Louis!” a concert of sacred French music in honor of the 250th Anniversary of the Founding of St. Louis. The concert will be presented on Sunday, October 26, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. at Basilica of St. Louis (The Old Cathedral), 209 Walnut St. St. Louis 63102.

The program highlights vocal chamber music composed and performed in the French court in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. When the city of St. Louis was founded in 1764, Louis XV was king of France. The city was named in honor of him and of St. Louis IX, the patron saint of France. Throughout France, the Feast of St. Louis was celebrated on every August 25 and, in honor of the occasion, the most celebrated composers of the day competed with one another by writing special music, including pieces we will be performing.

Included on our program are settings by Moulinié, Boismortier, and Bernier of “Domine salvum fac regem,” a special prayer for the well-being of the king that was included in every service sung at court; psalm settings by Charpentier and Campra; and a solo cantata by Rameau only discovered in 1969. The singers will be accompanied by an ensemble of period-appropriate instruments.

We are excited to be performing this program in the resplendent beauty of the newly renovated Old Cathedral, which itself holds a special place in our local history. The recent nine million dollar renovation of the Basilica of St. Louis (The Old Cathedral), on the Mississippi riverfront, included careful repairs and replacement of interior and exterior treatments with special attention to original design elements.

We look forward to having you join us to hear this special music and see the beauty of one of St. Louis’ most important landmarks, as we celebrate the 250th birthday of our fine city.

Admission to the concert is free and there is ample free parking in the church lot.