Chatham Baroque: The Pleasures of Purcell

It was a little crazy, but right after I came home from a mega-long Rachel Carson Trail hike today, I rushed to shower and change and run over to a special concert, “The Pleasures of Purcell” by the Chatham Baroque at the local Church of the Redeemer in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood. Objectively, I should have just called it a day after the hike, but I love the Chatham Baroque and learning from Annie earlier that they were playing in the neighborhood just several blocks from where I live made me decide to hop over there. (The concert was free to the public, but welcomed donations, of course: please remember to contribute generously when you attend these kinds of community good will events!)

I attended in part because the musical genre was basically new to me: choral music by Henry Purcell. This is not my kind of thing, but I’m old enough that I’ve gotten tired of only listening to “my kind of thing” rather than exploring what is new to me.

I ran into Annie as I was limping my way toward the church with sore feet. I also noticed that Sam from the Pittsburgh Recorder Society was a guest performer for some of the music.

The concert

The Chatham Baroque was joined by a choir and solo vocalists and conductor to fill out the forces needed to perform the music.

I was completely wowed by the bass soloist. The depth and expression of his voice was amazing.

As for the music itself, I’ve already confessed that mostly sacred choral music from this time period is not really my thing. I didn’t change my mind, although I was glad to have given it a shot. I have enjoyed playing the instrumental music of Henry Purcell for recorder, but this music for the English court didn’t do much for me.

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