Music of the Baroque (MOB) presents two must-see programs for this year’s Holiday Season: Handel’s “Messiah,” conducted by Nicholas Kraemer (Nov. 28-29), and the “Holiday Brass & Choral Concerts,” conducted by Andrew Megill (Dec. 16-19).
“A Thanksgiving Messiah” conducted by Nicholas Kraemer
Featuring Sherezade Panthaki (soprano), Allyson McHardy (mezzo-soprano), Richard Croft (tenor) and Matthew Brook (bass-baritone)
Principal guest conductor Nicholas Kraemer leads the Music of the Baroque Chorus and Orchestra in Handel’s most iconic oratorio, “Messiah.” These renditions mark the ensemble’s first performance of the work in over a decade. “What better way to celebrate the return to normality in the company of Music of the Baroque than with Handel’s ‘Messiah’?” asked Kraemer. “I am looking forward to presenting this masterpiece with its message of hope and redemption. ‘Messiah’ is so well-known, yet it still manages to reveal hidden moments of pure genius that I, for one, am still discovering after many years of performances.”
Performance Schedule and Tickets
• 7:30 p.m., Nov. 28, at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie, 9501 Skokie Blvd.(www.northshorecenter.org)
• 7:30 p.m., Nov. 29 at the Harris Theater, 205 E. Randolph Dr. (www.harristheaterchicago.org)
Tickets: $25-95. Visit file www.baroque.org or call 312.551.1414. Students can reserve up to two complimentary tickets per valid student ID by visiting baroque.org or calling 312.551.1414. Student tickets will also be available at the Harris Theater box office starting two hours prior to the performance.
Both the North Shore Center and the Harris require wearing of masks and proof of vaccination. For more information, visit www.northshorecenter.org and www.harristheaterchicago.org respectively.
“Holiday Brass & Choral Concerts” conducted by Andrew Megill
These concerts, representing the most enduring tradition in MOB’s history, will be performed at four Chicagoland locations spanning the city and the suburbs, including two new locations in Evanston and Winnetka. Guest conductor Andrew Megill, the conductor of the Montreal Symphony Chorus and the Carmel Bach Festival Chorus, will make his MOB conducting debut in a program that traces the holiday story through mystical chant, jubilant Renaissance and Baroque works for brass, ethereal music for a cappella choir and celebratory works for the entire ensemble. Featured composers include Gabrieli, Lassus, Hassler, Byrd, Willcocks, Salazar, and much more.
Performance Schedule and Tickets
• 8 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 16, at Grace Lutheran Church, 7300 Division St., River Forest, Ill.(www.graceriverforest.org)
• 8 p.m., Friday, Dec. 17, at St. Michael Church, 1633 N Cleveland Ave., Chicago (www.st-mikes.org)
Tickets: $48-$95. Visit www.baroque.org or call 312.551.1414
• 2 p.m., Saturday, Dec.18, at Saints Faith, Hope, & Charity Church, 191 Linden St., Winnetka, Ill. (www.faithhope.org)
• 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 19, at Alice Millar Chapel- Northwestern University, 1870 Sheridan Rd., Evanston, Ill. (www.northwestern.edu\millarchapel)
Tickets: $50-$100. Visit www.baroque.org or call 312.551.1414
At this time, masks and proof of vaccination will be required for all locations. For updates and more information, visit file www.baroque.org.
About Music of the Baroque
Under the direction of internationally acclaimed British conductor Dame Jane Glover, Music of the Baroque occupies a special place in the rich cultural life of Chicago. Long recognized as one of the region’s top classical groups, Music of the Baroque’s professional chorus and orchestra is one of the leading ensembles in the country devoted to the performance of eighteenth-century works.
Over the past five decades, Music of the Baroque has presented premiere performances of many early masterpieces, including Monteverdi’s operas and 1610 Vespers, Georg Philipp Telemann’s “Day of Judgment,” Mozart’s “Idomeneo,” and numerous Handel operas and oratorios. The ensemble has drawn particular praise throughout its history for its performances of the major choral and orchestral works of J. S. Bach and Handel, Mozart, and Haydn.
Opera News calls Music of the Baroque “one of Chicago’s musical glories” and the Chicago Sun-Times writes, “Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra may be the big guys on the local classical music scene, but in terms of sheer quality of performance…Music of the Baroque inhabits the same stratosphere.”
Music of the Baroque draws audiences from across the Chicago metropolitan area, performing regularly at the Harris Theater in Millennium Park in downtown Chicago and the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie, as well as at intimate Chicago and suburban churches. Listeners across the country enjoy the work of Music of the Baroque through radio broadcasts and recordings on 98.7 WFMT Radio.
Through its "Strong Voices" program, Music of the Baroque conducts arts education to support and enhance music education programs at Chicago public high schools. Music of the Baroque is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. For more information about Music of Baroque visit www.baroque.org.