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English Concert makes long awaited return to Union's concert series

The English Concert, with artistic director and harpsichordist Harry Bicket playing and conducting, will return to Memorial Chapel and the Union College Concert Series after more than 30 years. 

On Wednesday, Oct. 19 at 8 p.m., the English Concert, one of the world’s top Baroque ensembles, will perform a program of Purcell’s suites from his theatrical works King Arthur and The Fairy Queen, Vivaldi’s early “La Folia” Trio Sonata and virtuosic Concerto for 2 Trumpets in C Major, and Telemann’s beloved Tafelmusik and Viola Concerto. The program will feature member soloists Katarina Spreckelsen (oboe), Mark Bennett and Michael Harrison (trumpet) and Alfonso Leal del Oho (viola). 

Distinguished for both opera and concert conducting, Harry Bicket will make his Metropolitan Opera debut in its production of Rodelinda starring Renée Fleming shortly after appearing at Union. Mr. Bicket assumed the artistic directorship of the English Concert in 2007 and has since led the orchestra in tours to Europe, the USA and the Middle East. 

The English Concert was created in 1973 by Trevor Pinnock who led the orchestra for thirty years. Prolific recording artists, they made over 100 recordings with Mr. Pinnock and recordings with Harry Bicket have been well-received, earning the group a BBC Music Magazine Award for As Steals the Morn featuring Mark Padmore and the CD of the Month for Bach Cantatas by Gramophone Magazine. In addition to their tours, recent highlights include a return to the Barbican Hall Great Performers Series in London, Handel’s Sampson at the 2009 BBC Proms, residencies at the Victoria & Albert and Handel House museums, and the first English Concert master class for young harpsichordist-conductors at the Foundling Museum.

Individual tickets are $25 or $10 for students. Members of the Union College community may attend for free. For information, call 388-6080 or visit the website.