Academy of Ancient Music to Present Brandenburg Concertos at Center for the Arts

Posted: March 12, 2009 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

As one of the world’s first and foremost period-instrument orchestras, Britain’s Academy of Ancient Music combines a historically enlightened approach with an exceptionally high standard of performance.

Led by Music Director Richard Egarr on harpsichord, the ensemble will provide a rare opportunity to hear all six of Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos at Mason’s Center for the Arts on Sunday, March 22, at 4 p.m.

Academy of Ancient Music
Academy of Ancient Music
Photo by Richard Haughton

In 1791, Johann Sebastian Bach presented a manuscript of these six concertos to the Margrave of Brandenburg, from whom they take their name, although there is no evidence that they were ever performed in Brandenburg. The composer had likely written the concertos for various special occasions throughout the decade and later presented them to the Margrave in hopes of receiving a reward or title.

Known for remarkable scoring and structure, each concerto was written to be distinct from the others in style and instrumentation.

Since its formation by Christopher Hogwood in 1973, the Academy of Ancient Music has demonstrated its preeminence in the music of the baroque and classical periods with concerts across six continents and more than 250 recordings.

Egarr succeeded Hogwood as director in 2006. Egarr is an incredibly versatile musician who has worked with all types of keyboards, from 15th-century organ intabulations to Dussek and Chopin on early piano to Berg and Maxwell Davies on modern piano.

Egarr is in demand as a soloist, chamber musician and conductor. As a conductor, Egarr has directed a wide range of repertoire including oratorios and operas by great composers at some of the most prestigious venues in the world. He also tours extensively with violinist Andrew Manze. Egarr records exclusively for Harmonia Mundi USA, and his recordings include an impressive list of award-winning recordings with Manze.

A discussion, free to ticket holders, will begin 45 minutes prior to the performance on the Center’s Grand Tier III.

The Center for the Arts recognizes the generous support of PNC and the PNC Foundation as sponsors of the 2008-09 Great Performances at Mason season.

Tickets are $48, $40 and $24. Charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or visit

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