Victoria Baroque presents Joy, Passion, Metamorphosis at St. Andrew’s United Church on Saturday, Jan. 12. (Photo courtesy Jan Gates)

Victoria Baroque to bring ‘joy, passion, metamorphosis’ to Nanaimo

Concert honouring George Frideric Handel to be held at St. Andrew’s United Church

The Victoria Baroque ensemble is coming to Nanaimo with a concert dedicated to German-born composer George Frideric Handel and the group has enlisted the help of a pair of musicians from across the pond.

British harpsichordist Steven Devine will direct the show Joy, Passion, Metamorphosis, which features an appearance from his wife, soprano Kate Semmens. The concert takes place at St. Andrew’s United Church on Saturday, Jan. 12. Devine is a returning collaborator, but this will be the first time that Semmens will be performing with the ensemble.

“We have not done all that much Handel before, but it’s very fun for the audiences and its very fun for the players,” said Victoria Baroque flautist and artistic director Soile Stratkauskas. “He just has a very beautiful sense of melody so this is the first time we are focusing on doing some of his vocal works, which is really fun.”

The concert will include Handel’s Concerto Grosso in B flat as well as his orchestral suite from The Alchemist. Semmens will perform will perform the aria Sweet Bird from L’Allegro il Penseroso and Victoria baritone Nathan McDonald will join her in the cantata L’Apollo e Daphne.

“The concert is all music by Handel but it’s very varied music and there’s a great variety of different textures,” Stratkauskas said. “We have the baroque strings and we’ll also have baroque oboes, baroque bassoon and baroque flute and Handel uses all these instruments very imaginatively.”

Stratkauskas said the selected pieces all feature the “different colours” of the orchestra well and suit its size. She said L’Apollo e Daphne, which is based on a Greek myth, is “quite intimate, but at the same time Handel just pulls out so many different colours and different effects, different emotions out form the ensemble.” Stratkauskas said the group typically plays sacred music, and taking on more theatrical secular work has been a nice change.

She said Devine is a “very dynamic performer” and hopes the concert will leave audiences feeling energized and joyful. Stratkauskas added that the group’s use of period instruments contributes to its distinct sound.

“I feel like our performances on these instruments is a more personal and intimate experience,” she said. “And St. Andrew’s church in Nanaimo is a very nice space for these instruments to be playing in, so I think it will be a very nice, warm sound that will envelop the audience.”

WHAT’S ON … Victoria Baroque presents Joy, Passion, Metamorphosis at St. Andrew’s United Church on Saturday, Jan. 12 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $28 for adults, $25 for seniors and $5 for students and children.



arts@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(BLACK PRESS FILE PHOTO)
Nanaimo man killed in Highway 4 crash

RCMP say dirt bike turned ‘suddenly’ into traffic

Nanaimo Track and Field club member Olivia Lundman set a Canadian record in the U18 3,000-metre race walk event at meet in Kamloops this past weekend. (Photo submitted)
Nanaimo Track and Field Club race walker sets national record at her first meet of the season

Olivia Lundman breaks 30-year-old mark in U18 3,000-metre race walk

Nanaimo RCMP arrest man with axe in downtown park. (File photo)
Man seen with axe at Nanaimo park, numerous RCMP officers respond

Incident happened Friday evening at Maffeo Sutton Park

Bouquet to the person who sent the beef about the rude couple at the fast food restaurant. I want to say a huge thank you for standing up for that poor person who had to endure their bullying. That couple would be my father and his girlfriend. It’s about time someone told them off.
Beefs & Bouquets, Oct. 21

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Nanaimo RCMP are asking the public to keep an eye open for jewelry, watches and other items that were stolen from a residence on Manhattan Way in Lantzville recently. (Photo submitted)
Watches, rings, ID and other items stolen from Lantzville home

Nanaimo RCMP want the public to be on the lookout for items taken in recent break-and-enter

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry presents modelling of COVID-19 spread in B.C., March 25, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. sets another COVID-19 record with 203 new cases

up to 1,766 active cases in B.C., two more deaths

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
British Columbia man dies during ski trip near glacier west of Calgary

Kananaskis Public Safety and Alpine Helicopters responded around 2:30 p.m.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, Oct. 19, 2020, following a week-long break for the House of Commons. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
One crisis after another for Trudeau since last federal election one year ago

It has been a year of unprecedented calamity and crisis

Candidates in the Nanaimo riding include Kathleen Jones, B.C. Liberal Party, top left; Sheila Malcolmson, NDP; Lia Versaevel, Green Party. (Photos submitted/News Bulletin photo/Elections B.C. image)
B.C. VOTES 2020: Nanaimo candidates

Provincial election candidates discuss their priorities in their own words

Candidates in the Parksville-Qualicum riding include Rob Lyon, B.C. Green Party, top left; Don Purdey, Conservatives; John St. John, independent; Michelle Stilwell, B.C. Liberals; and Adam Walker, B.C. NDP. (Photos submitted/Elections B.C. image)
B.C. VOTES 2020: Parksville-Qualicum candidates

Provincial election candidates discuss their priorities in their own words

Candidates in the Nanaimo-North Cowichan riding include Chris Istace, B.C. Green Party, top left; Duck Paterson, B.C. Liberals; and Doug Routley, NDP. (Photos submitted/Elections B.C. image)
B.C. VOTES 2020: Nanaimo-North Cowichan candidates

Provincial election candidates discuss their priorities in their own words

Rotary Centennial Garden at Maffeo Sutton Park. (Sean Fenzl photo)
New Rotary garden officially open at Nanaimo’s Maffeo Sutton Park

Rotary Centennial Garden design inspired by the shoreline

Members of the Sipekne’katik First Nation load lobster traps on the wharf in Saulnierville, N.S., after launching its own self-regulated fishery on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Vancouver Island First Nations back Nova Scotia’s Indigenous lobster fishermen

Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council calls for action before lives are lost

Most Read