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Peaceful, Easy Keaton

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Baroque music aficionados take note: Sunday’s concert at the Blair School of Music presents J.S. Bach’s music as the composer himself might have heard it, with a boy choir and historically accurate instruments. Belle Meade Baroque’s Artistic Director Murray Somerville hopes that the result, for anyone unfamiliar with this approach to Bach, will be “vivid and bright…like stripping the varnish off a lovely old painting.” Somerville created the ensemble five years ago with oboist George Riordan of MTSU and violinist Karen Clarke of Blair, aiming to bring professional-level historically informed performance into Nashville’s musical community. He is also the musical director of St. George’s Episcopal Church and was previously Harvard’s University Organist and Choirmaster and a pupil of renowned Bach specialist Karl Richter. The Nashville Boychoir is no elementary-school-assembly affair; the group has performed and recorded with the Nashville Symphony, and they’ve given concerts as far afield as Bach’s hometown of Leipzig. Hazel Somerville, who leads the choir as Artistic Director of the Blair Children’s Choruses, came to Nashville after eight years leading Boston’s Youth pro Musica. The program includes Bach’s beautiful motet Jesu, meine Freude, the First Orchestral Suite, the Cantata Christus, der ist mein Leben and the aria Schlummert ein.
Sun., March 8, 3 p.m., 2009

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