On Sunday, February 26, the Christ Church String Quartet of Christ Church Easton will be presenting music by J. S. Bach, Edvard Grieg and Tomasa Albinoni at the 11:00 service. Pre-service music will begin at 10:50 a.m., and the public is invited.
First in Sunday’s repertoire, the resident quartet will be joined by oboist Heidi Schultz to form an oboe quintet. Schultz who is currently on the music faculty at Washington College is a graduate of the University of Kansas, Northwestern University in Chicago, and the Peabody Conservatory. She was for eight years a member of the United States Naval Academy Band, and was also a member of the Chicago Symphony and the American Wind Symphony. Together, Schultz and the four other very gifted musicians will present the Sinfonia, a ten minute movement from Johann Sebastian Bach’s cantata, Gott soll allein mein herze haben, BWV 169. As was common during the period, the material found in the Sinfonia is known to have appeared elsewhere in the composer’s work. In this case, the work presented relies on portions of a lost concerto thought to have been written between 1717 and 1723 while Bach was in Köthen. That same concerto was probably also the inspiration for two additional concertos, a harpsichord concerto, BWV 1053 and an organ concerto used in an organ dedication in 1725.
During the communion, the Christ Church String Quartet will present the hauntingly beautiful Adagio in G minor attributed to the 18th century Venetian composer, Tomaso Albinoni. Much debate surrounds this neo-baroque gem raising question as to whether Albinoni actually had anything to do with the piece at all. The controversy stems from 20th-century musicologist and Albinoni biographer Remo Giazotto who claimed to have based the piece on a fragment from an original manuscript by Albinoni. Whether the piece was real is questionable, but it has come to be accepted that the finished work is that of Giazotto. Following the Adagio, the quartet will present a setting of Edvard Grieg’s Morning Mood commonly known as incidental music to the play Peer Gynt by Henrik Ibsen. While the piece was written to depict scenes in a Moroccan desert, most listeners find it more reflective of Grieg’s Scandinavian origins.
Also during the service, the Christ Church Choir will present Allen Pote’s setting of the 121st Psalm, I Lift Up Mine Eyes to the Hills. A well known setting in choral music, the piece will also feature the oboe and Easton flautist, Gerri McGuire.
Christ Church is located at 111 S. Harrison Street in Easton. For information regarding this or other musical events, call 410-822-2677.