Music Preview: Music City Baroque shines a spotlight on Telemann

Johann Sebastian Bach was without question the greatest composer of his day (and, for that matter, of any other day), but he wasn’t the most famous musician working in Germany during the first half of the 18th century. That distinction goes to Georg Philipp Telemann, whose music is the focus of this weekend’s Music City Baroque concert.

telemann1As music director of Hamburg’s five main churches, Telemann was expected to crank out a considerable amount of original music every week. All five of these churches, after all, needed music for their Sunday services and holy days. Telemann obliged. But when he wasn’t writing for the church, he also wrote concert music and operas – one wonders when he ever slept.  Not surprisingly, Telemann is now widely viewed as history’s most prolific composer, with an oeuvre consisting of more than 3,000 works.

For its 3 p.m. concert at Woodmont Christian Church, 3601 Hillsboro Pike, Music City Baroque will perform some of the most lyrically appealing of these works. The program will include the Fantasie in E major for solo flute; Trio sonata in F major, “Corellisante;” “Paris” Quartet in E minor; Partita for solo harpsichord; “Wandelt in der Liebe” for voice and flute; and the Trio sonata in D minor.

Some of the city’s finest period-instrument musicians – violinists Karen Clarke, Laura Ross and Andrea Dawson, flutist Jessica Dunnavant, harpsichordist Lillian Pearson, lutenist Francis Perry, cellist Christopher Stenstrom, and mezzo-soprano Mareike Sattler— will perform.

Woodmont Christian Church is sponsoring the concert, so admission is free.

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About John Pitcher

John Pitcher is the chief classical music, jazz and dance critic as well as co-founder of ArtsNash. He has been a classical music critic for the Washington Post, the Rochester (NY) Democrat and Chronicle, National Public Radio’s Performance Today (NPR), ArtNowNashville.com and the Nashville Scene. His writings about music and the arts have also appeared in Symphony Magazine, American Record Guide and Stagebill Magazine, among other publications. Pitcher earned his master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, where he studied arts writing with Judith Crist and Phyllis Garland. His work has received the New York State Associated Press award for outstanding classical music criticism.