Captain's Log, September

We had a heartening turn-out for our opening Sanctuary in the City concert on September 5th, including a good number of fellow musicians from other organizations. It hadn’t occurred to me before, but a Wednesday lunchtime concert offers an opportunity to colleagues who are so often engaged either in playing in our own concerts or in other concerts at the same time on weekend evenings. The house band of Tekla Cunningham, Henry Lebedinsky, Maxine Eilander and I were the instrumentalists with our two wonderful sopranos, Tess Altiveros and Danielle Sampson, who will also be the featured soloists in our Valentine-season concerts called Leading Ladies, and I’m happy to say that Danielle will actually be in every one of our Mainstage concerts this season, and Tess in three out of four!

Our own Tess Altiveros after singing the National Anthem at Safeco Field.

Our own Tess Altiveros after singing the National Anthem at Safeco Field.

You may have noticed, one way or another, that both Tess Altiveros and Aaron Sheehan have had prominent outings at sports events recently with the National Anthem (video of Aaron posted here) and we hope you will come to see the two of them as Samson and Delilah at the end of our season with Handel’s Samson.

Speaking of previewing our season (including Mainstage, Underground and Sanctuary events) our redesigned website has just gone live and we think you will find it very clear and user-friendly. We look forward to your comments and suggestions to keep improving it! The address has remained the same,

The very next thing of great importance to us is our annual Gala (this year called Festa Italiana) on Sunday, September 23rd at 5pm, with the same line-up of the PMW band. We will be back at Resonance at SOMA Towers in Bellevue for this event. Last year was our first time at Resonance and it was a wonderful party which we intend to top this time. Come dressed to impress for photos on the red carpet, and with an appetite to enjoy our very special new catering from On Safari Foods and the dessert dash to finish. Meanwhile, our amiable host Matt Smith will be back and the house band will have a special musical offering. Tickets are available here on our website.

We hope to see many of you there!

Hopefully you will have received a postcard about Festa Italiana – and more recently an e-mail blast, both adorned with the image of Caravaggio’s Bacchus. This image has a special meaning to me: in high school, I first encountered baroque art – both in music and in painting. My high school chamber choir performed madrigals of Dowland and Monteverdi and somewhere I saw paintings by Caravaggio and fell in love with them. I managed to get a large reproduction of Caravaggio’s Bacchus, which then had the place of honor on my bedroom wall for the rest of my teens. His friendly but enigmatic expression (a sort of male Mona Lisa) and his proffered glass of wine seemed to me to be an invitation to all the pleasures of life and art. They still do.

Then in Early October, Henry starts the Underground season with BACHtoberfest, but since there are so many Underground concerts in a variety of venues, please see the new PMW website for all of those.

The season opener of Mainstage productions will be Monteverdi Masterworks on Oct. 26 at Trinity Lutheran, Lynnwood, and Oct. 27 at St. James Cathedral (tickets here). Coming back to St. James (after our many performances of Monteverdi’s 1610 Vespers there) seems like a home-coming not only to the space, but also to the glorious opulence of Monteverdi’s music for Venice’s San Marco. From the vast collection of his best late compositions for the church and chamber called Selva Morale et Spirituale from 1641, it was difficult to select only one concert’s worth, but it should have the effect of Monteverdi’s “greatest hits” and we have a stunning vocal and instrumental line-up to do justice to these jewels. We will have a pre-concert presentation in the Conference Room at Skyline across the street from the Cathedral at 6:30 with the concert beginning at 7:30. Please join us there, and we will process together to St. James (namesake of Santiago de Compostela – legendary goal of pilgrimage on the Iberian peninsula).

Philip TschoppComment