Davis High Baroque Ensemble holding festive fundraiser to support Italy trip

By From page A7 | January 15, 2014


Back row from left, Davis High Baroque Ensemble member Jesse Yang (violin), chef Tony Gruska, director Angelo Moreno, Ryan Bruch (violin) and, front row, Hannah Collier (cello), and Katherine Winder (viola) will put on a fundraiser Jan. 19. Stephanie Yang/Courtesy photo

The Davis High School Baroque Ensemble has been invited to perform in Rome, Florence and Venice as participants in the 2014 American Celebration of Music in Italy concert series.

The planned trip to Italy involves fundraising. And from 5 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 19, the student musicians of the Baroque Ensemble are teaming up with Monticello Seasonal Cuisine for a music, appetizers and wine-tasting event.

Under the direction of Grammy-nominated director Angelo Moreno, the Baroque Ensemble will perform live music, Monticello chef Tony Gruska will prepare seasonal appetizers, and special guest Susan Leonardi, who writes the Wineaux column for The Davis Enterprise, will pour wine, assisted by UC Davis enology students.

This delicious and musical evening also will include a raffle of many unusual hand-crafted items and an auction of a private wine cellar including some of the finest local and imported wines.

Tickets are $30 and may be purchased at Watermelon Music, 207 E St., or at Monticello Seasonal Cuisine, 630 G St. For information, contact Melissa Collier at 530-220-2753 or [email protected] or Patti Huston at 530-902-7689 or [email protected].

The Davis High School Baroque Ensemble is believed to be the only such ensemble at a public school in the United States. The 34 student musicians play on violin, viola, cello and bass instruments that have been modified to closely resemble those played in the Baroque Era, 1600-1750.

In addition, the ensemble has acquired a harpsichord to further enhance the authenticity of the period’s sound. The repertoire includes Vivaldi, Bach, Corelli, Handel and other composers of the Baroque era.

For a group like the Baroque Ensemble, the opportunity to visit Italy — the birthplace of Baroque music and culture — is especially alluring. During the trip, the musicians will perform in ancient venues befitting their period ensemble, visit the places where these composers taught and wrote, and participate in master classes and workshops.

While in Italy, the students also will participate in educational outreach events, including an exchange concert with students from a local Italian conservatory, and a special concert for the Instituto Provinsiale in L’Infanzia Santa Maria della Pieta, a former orphanage founded in 1346 where Vivaldi taught music to the children. The facility now is a home for abandoned children and unwed mothers and their children.

Enterprise staff

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