For all Adrian Spence‘s laudable, many times proven, commitment to modern and/or contemporary music — not to mention Haydn-to-Brahms — I am pretty sure Johann Sebastian Bach remains the center of his musical universe (remember that the first incarnation, three-plus decades ago, of his unique and wonderful chamber music association was called the “Bach Camerata”).
So, I was not exactly shocked to learn he was opening a new branch, Camerata Pacifica Baroque, devoted to Bach and his world.
According to the Camerata:
“Camerata Pacifica Baroque’s Music Director Emi Ferguson, Katie Hyun, Coleman Itzkoff & Mikael Darmanie are going to take you on an exploration of Bach. But, it’s Bach with a twist, for this is a program from the deep and alluringly strange recesses of the mind of Emi Ferguson. If you haven’t heard of Emi, google her — she’s one of a kind, a force of nature and we love to have her on the Camerata stages.”
But the most comprehensive announcement came from the “Early Music America” website:
“Embracing works from the Old and New Worlds, Camerata Pacifica presents with “From Bach to Bolivia,” the first of two programs in its new Camerata Pacifica Baroque series featuring period instruments and curated by acclaimed flutist Emi Ferguson.
“The repertoire for the inaugural Baroque concert includes five seminal Bach chamber works: Prelude and Fugue; Trio Sonata No. 5; Prelude; Trio Sonata No. 2; and Toccata and Fugue.
“They are set against six anonymous chamber works composed during the same era in Bolivia, which were rediscovered in the past 20 years in the Chiquitos Music Archives housed in a Bolivian Jesuit mission church and compiled by Dr. Piotr Nawrot.
“Bridging Bach’s masterworks and the anonymous works composed on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean is La Folia by Doménico Zipoli, an Italian composer who completed his musical training in Europe before moving in 1717 to Córdoba in Spanish Colonial America (now in Argentina), where he served as music director for the local Jesuit church.”
Camerata Pacifica Baroque will play their inaugural program at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 17 in the Huntington, San Marino; 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 19 at the Colburn School, Los Angeles; 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 20 at the Music Academy in Santa Barbara; 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 21 in Speakeasy! PC+1, Los Angeles; and 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 22, in Scherr Forum, Thousand Oaks.
Tickets are $75-$80 for all venues (except Speakeasy PC+1) and can be purchased online at https://cameratapacifica.org/concerts-23-24/.