A Lily Among Thorns
Poetry and Virtuosity in Czech Baroque Music
Sts. Simon and Jude Church
The Lily Among Thorns concert will introduce listeners to the world of early Baroque music in the Kingdom of Bohemia in several contrasting ways. Refined musical virtuosity, and not only instrumental, will combine with the simple but compelling lyrical poetics of strophic songs by the knight Adam Václav Michna of Otradovice. He dedicated Czech Marian Music, his first collection of songs (1647), to Marian veneration. In eleven songs from this extensive collection, we will explore the life of the Mother of God from her birth and the annunciation, through to the crucifixion of Jesus, Mary’s death and the Ascension.
Unlike Michna, both Heinrich Ignaz Franz Biber, whose “Annunciation” from his well-known Rosary Sonatas will be performed, and his equally accomplished colleague Samuel Capricornus, a native of Žerčice near Mladá Boleslav, were Baroque cosmopolitans. Vincenzo Albrici also travelled across Europe before spending the last eight years of his life as an organist in Prague.
This diverse programme will give us an insight into the piety, poetry and instrumental virtuosity of those times, represent both settled composers and globetrotters, Czechs and Italians, and, like a Baroque painting with its chiaroscuro contrasts, bring out in their various interconnections the very best aspects of their creative work.
Hana Blažíková – soprano
Lenka Torgersen – Baroque violin
Vojtěch Semerád – Baroque violin, Baroque viola
Jana Semerádová – flauto traverso, recorders
Hana Fleková – viola da gamba
Ján Prievozník – violon
Jan Krejča – theorbo
Kateřina Ghannudi – Baoroque harp
Filip Hrubý – organ