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Chicago’s Music of the Baroque has announced its 2021-22 season, the 51st for the ensemble, including several programs that were originally intended to be part of the group’s 50th anniversary, altered due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Music director Jane Glover directs two major choral works, according to Sunday’s announcement: Bach’s “Easter Oratorio” in April and Haydn’s “Creation” Mass in May. And for the holidays, guest conductor Nicholas Kraemer will lead Thanksgiving performances of Handel’s “Messiah,” a rare selection for the ensemble.
Music of the Baroque also returns to the outdoors for its second “Baroque in the Park” at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park Sept. 10, featuring the Strong Voices Choir, part of the ensemble’s program in Chicago Public Schools.
Most performances take place at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts (9501 Skokie Blvd.) in Skokie and at the Harris Theater (205 E. Randolph St.) in Millennium Park. Subscriptions for the 2021-22 concert season are on sale now at 312-551-1414 and baroque.org. Single tickets will go on sale in late August:
“Baroque Fireworks”: 3 p.m. Sept. 19 at the North Shore Center and 7:30 p.m. Sept. 20 at the Harris. With the world premiere of composer Stacy Garrop’s “Spectacle of Light” plus Handel’s “Water Music” Suite No. 2, “Music for the Royal Fireworks” and Concerto a due cori No. 1; and Telemann’s Concerto No. 1 for 3 Trumpets. With Music of the Baroque Chorus and Orchestra; Glover as conductor; Barbara Butler, Tage Larsen and Channing Philbrick, trumpets.
“Vivaldi and Friends”: 7:30 p.m. Oct. 17 at the North Shore Center and 7:30 p.m. Oct. 18 at the Harris. Includes selections by Corelli, Vivaldi, J.S. Bach and Albinoni. With Music of the Baroque orchestra; John Butt as conductor, Anne Bach, oboe; William Buchman, bassoon; and Kathleen Brauer, Kevin Case, Sharon Polifrone, violins.
“Thanksgiving Messiah”: Nov. 29 at the North Shore Center and 7:30 p.m. Nov. 29 at the Harris. Performing Handel’s “Messiah,” by Music of the Baroque Chorus and Orchestra; Nicholas Kraemer as conductor; Sherezade Panthaki, soprano; Allyson McHardy, mezzo-soprano; Richard Croft, tenor; and Matthew Brook, bass-baritone.
“Holiday Brass and Choral Concerts”: Performing 8 p.m. Dec. 16 at Grace Lutheran Church, River Forest; 8 p.m. Dec. 17 at St. Michael Church in Old Town; 2 p.m. Dec. 18 at Faith, Hope and Charity Church, Winnetka; 2 p.m. Dec. 19 at Alice Millar Chapel, Evanston. Music of the Baroque Chorus and Brass Ensemble and Andrew Megill, conductor.
“McGill Plays Mozart”: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 27, 2022 at the North Shore Center and 7:30 p.m. Feb. 28, 2022 at the Harris. Selections by Mozart by music of the Baroque Orchestra with Glover as conductor; Anthony McGill, clarinet.
“Classical Heroines”: 7:30 p.m. March 20, 2022 at the North Shore Center and 7:30 p.m. March 21, 2022 at the Harris. Haydn, Handel and Purcell; Music of the Baroque Orchestra; Nicholas Kraemer, conductor; Amanda Forsythe, soprano.
“Easter Oratorio”: 7:30 p.m. April 10, 2022 at the North Shore Center and 7:30 p.m. April 11, 2022 at the Harris. Bach, with Music of the Baroque Chorus and Orchestra; Glover as conductor; Yulia Van Doren, soprano; Elizabeth DeShong, mezzo-soprano; James Gilchrist, tenor; Michael Sumuel, bass-baritone.
“The Brothers Haydn”: 7:30 p.m. May 8, 2022 at the North Shore Center and 7:30 p.m. May 9, 2022 at the Harris. Michael and Joseph Hayden. With Glover as conductor; Heidi Stober, soprano; Meg Bragle, mezzo-soprano; Michael St. Peter, tenor; Tyler Duncan, bass-baritone.