Baroque Music In Ponsonby

Hausmusik NZ will present a concert titled 'Imported from Italy' on Sunday 15 November at 5pm in the Ponsonby Baptist Church.

The concert features Baroque chamber music by popular Italian or Italian-trained composers of the period, including secular love cantatas by Steffani and Scarlatti, an aria by Handel, and instrumental music by Platti, Geminiani, Heinichen and Barsanti.

The music is melodic and beautiful and can be immediately appreciated by modern audiences. Performers of Hausmusik NZ, a professional chamber music ensemble performing on period instruments, are Rita Paczian (mezzo and harpsichord), John Paczian-Green (baroque oboe) and Polly Sussex (baroque cello).

Background:During the late 1600s and early 1700s, a craze for Italian music developed throughout northern Europe - fuelled both by the drama and melodic attractiveness of Italian-style opera as well as by travelling virtuoso performer/composers’ (Corelli, Vivaldi etc) performances of new-fangled and excitingly operatic solo concertos and sonatas.

Rich patrons, rapturous audiences and both professional and amateur musicians north of the Alps simply couldn’t get enough of this music,resulting in a massive demand for Italian-composed music and Italian (or Italian-trained) singers and instrumentalists. Wealthy aristocrats often set up personal orchestras and opera companies, importing the best Italian virtuosi (e.g., Steffani, Platti) that they could afford, to perform and compose for them.

Commercial impresarios did the same on a larger scale for themass market in large cities such as London (bringing in musicians such as Handel, Geminiani &Barsanti). Young, aspiring composers, singers and instrumentalists often travelled in the opposite direction to train with the top Italian masters and the best of these students (e.g, Handel, Heinichen) were in turn imported back northwards to fill important roles in leading courts and cities.

One of the perfomers, Dr Polly Sussex, cellist and viola player, lives in Douglas Street in Ponsonby. She is a well known performer in NZ with a number of ensembles including Affetto and Bach Musica NZ.

You can find her bio online:

The Details:
What: Hausmusik NZ presents Imported from Italy – Italian Music that Captivated Baroque EuropeDate: Sunday 15 November.
Time: 5 pm.
Location: Ponsonby Baptist Church, 43 Jervois Road,
www.Hausmusik NZ