Sunday, March 17, 2013

Venice Music Project - New Venue for Ancient Music

Liesl Odenweller and the Venetia Antiqua Ensemble
(Venice, Italy) One of the most pleasant ways to spend an evening in Venice is to enjoy classical music in an ancient venue, and there are several excellent groups that perform throughout town. Now, there is a new kid in the campo called Venice Music Project, with American soprano Liesl Odenweller center stage. It is a delightful blend of the some of the best ingredients that Italy and the USA have to offer, with the majestic church of San Giovanni Evangelista as the setting. The inaugural concert on March 1st featured music by Vivaldi, Marcello and Haendel, and Liesl was resplendent in a gown and jewelry created by the local contemporary designer, Gualti.

Venetia Antiqua Ensemble is made up of some of the most distinguished performers of Baroque music in the world, all of whom live or have studied in Venice. Individually, the musicians perform in top-quality venues, such as Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall and Musikverein, with renowned conductors -- Sir Simon Rattle, Andrea Marcon, Marc Minkowski, Alan Curtis, Sir John Eliot Gardiner -- and record with labels like Sony, Deutsche Grammophon and Towerhill. All the music is performed on original instruments or exact copies, and the choice of repertoire reaches back into the ancient past, meticulously researched and scored.

The goal of Venice Music Project is to resurrect the performance of Early Music in Venice, a tradition that dates back centuries, while, at the same time, investing a portion of the box office into restoration projects for the Church and Scuola. The Scuola Grande di San Giovanni Evangelista was one of the Venetian Republic's seven Scuole Grandi, or "Great Schools," and is dedicated to Saint John the Evangelist, whose symbol is the eagle. These "schools" were important confraternities that performed a variety of charitable functions, as well as patronizing the arts. They provided food, clothing and even burials for their poorer members, dowries to daughters, oversaw the hospitals and sponsored festivities and processions. Unlike the strictly controlled Venetian nobility, membership was open to all citizens -- in fact, no aristocrat was permitted to have a director role in a scuola. This allowed ordinary citizens to control powerful institutions, and have some level of influence upon the government. 

When Philip de Mezières, the Chancellor of the Kingdom of Jerusalem and the Kingdom of Cyprus gave San Giovanni Evangelista a piece of the True Cross in 1369, its prestige was cranked up, and it transformed into a rich and powerful organization, attracting some of Venice's wealthiest and influential citizens. They commissioned some of the Republic's most important artists to create works based on a "cross" theme, including Vittore Carpaccio's Miracle of the Relic of the Holy Cross at the Rialto Bridge (The Healing of the Madman) (1496), now in the Accademia. 

Miracolo della Croce a Rialto by Carpaccio
In addition to the concerts of the resident orchestra, Venetia Antiqua Ensemble, Venice Music Project has created a season of Baroque music concerts, where international groups will perform the seventeenth and eighteenth century music that was celebrated in Venice. The schedule of performances, through July 2013, can be found HERE.

Further information can be found at the Venice Music Project site, in both English and Italian, where you can book in advance. Tickets (€30 full price, €20 reduced, €15 students and children under 12 free) are available at the venue itself, and at most hotels in Venice.

www.venicemusicproject.it
Tel: +39 345-791-1948

Ciao from Venezia,
Cat
Venetian Cat - The Venice Blog

4 comments:

  1. One of the most pleasant ways to spend an evening in Venice is to enjoy classical music in an ancient venue, and there are several excellent groups that perform throughout town. Now, there is a new kid in the campo called Venice Music Project, with American soprano Liesl Odenweller center stage. It is a delightful blend of the some of the best ingredients that Italy and the USA have to offer, with the majestic church of San Giovanni Evangelista as the setting.

    ReplyDelete
  2. ...and about GUALTI, see also :
    http://www.facebook.com/gualti.venezia
    ♥ ♥ ♥

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great information! Definitely sounds like a good addition to anyone's Venice itinerary.

    http://katherinebelarmino.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  4. Tiziano Bedetti, Venetian DNA http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FiWi6JqDYaE

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...