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Gala Video 4: Back to Bach

  • Jul 28, 2010
The July 3, 2010 gala concert was the high point of the Oregon Bach Festival's 40th anniversary celebrations. A series of videos bridged the thirteen musical numbers and served to cover set changes. Each of the eight videos focused on an aspect of the OBF's history or mission. "Back to Bach" looks at the music roots of the OBF and the importance of Bach as a composer, as an inspiration, and as "master teacher," in the words of Helmuth Rilling. This video includes a 1988 interview with Rilling on the nature of Bach's music, and brief scenes from the 2010 OBF... read more

Gala Video 3: New Music and Commissions

  • Jul 26, 2010
The July 3, 2010 gala concert was the high point of the Oregon Bach Festival's 40th anniversary celebrations. A series of videos bridged the thirteen musical numbers and served to cover set changes. Each of the eight videos focused on an aspect of the OBF's history or mission. "New Music" focuses on commissions, premieres, and projects that aimed to place Bach's legacy of sacred music in the context of our time. It features an inside look at the 2009 premiere of Messiah by Sven-David Sandstrom, and the 2001 Grammy award presentation to Helmuth Rilling and Krzysztof Penderecki's Credo. The 40th anniversary videos... read more

Gala Video 2: A Broad Range of Music

  • Jul 21, 2010
The July 3 gala concert was the high point of the Oregon Bach Festival's 40th anniversary celebrations. A series of videos bridged the thirteen musical numbers and served to cover set changes. Each of the eight videos focused on an aspect of the OBF's history or mission. "A Broad Musical Perspective" considers the nature of the festival atmosphere, which allows for a wide range of musical styles to be incorporated. Included are guest artists such as conductor Maria Guinand. The 40th anniversary videos were produced by Pushplay Productions, Eugene. Special thanks to Oregon Public Broadcasting and Alex Richanbach for his interview with... read more

Gala Video 1: The Beginnings

  • Jul 19, 2010
The July 3 gala concert was the high point of the Oregon Bach Festival's 40th anniversary celebrations. A series of videos bridged the thirteen musical numbers and served to cover set changes. Each of the eight videos focused on an aspect of the OBF's history or mission. We'll highlight each video in this space over the next few weeks. First, a historical perspective, featuring interviews with Helmuth Rilling and Royce Saltzman and a clip from a 1988 Oregon Public Broadcasting concert special. The 40th anniversary videos were produced by Pushplay Productions, Eugene. Special thanks to Oregon Public Broadcasting and Alex Richanbach for his... read more

From the seats - Portland Elijah

  • Jul 15, 2010
Last weekend I was thrilled to see the Bach Festival’s Portland performance of Elijah.  I’ll admit that after spending the day in my ninety-degree house, I would have been content to go anywhere with central A/C; however, I was positively floored at the opportunity to attend a performance of one of the greatest oratorios of all time with one of the finest singers in the world.  As a veteran Portland concert-goer (true story: from 2005 through 2007 I never missed an Oregon Symphony concert), I am used to the standard Portland summer-concert scene of chamber music and piano sonatas in... read more

Helmuth hangs ten

  • Jul 14, 2010
In Sunday's magical performance of Elijah it was as if the old "life imitates art" chestnut would ring true. Soon after the chorus sang about mighty winds, tumbling mountains, heaving earthquakes, and roaring fires, one of the legs of Helmuth's podium collapsed. As reviewer Terry McQuilkin observed, the mishap nearly "hurled Rilling into the cellos. The conductor didn’t lose a beat, and this minor distraction was soon forgotten." Helmuth apparently forgot too, as when he stepped on the podium for the bows, it teetered again. He recovered with a smile on his face, and on his returning bow, nimbly stepped to the... read more

From the seats - The Schumanns

  • Jul 8, 2010
After attending At Home With The Schumanns I can say without a doubt that I've never enjoyed vocal music (at least solo) more than I did last night. You can quote me on that. Perhaps I hadn't heard enough Schumann before. Maybe the “at home” staging made the music/vocalists more accessible or welcoming. There's a chance Roxana Constantinescu may have had something to do with it. Regardless, the July 6 concert was a fantastic experience from start to finish, both in concept and content, and left me looking forward to next year's program....Dance Party with Debussy perhaps? [caption id="attachment_853" align="alignright" width="195"... read more

From the seats - Bobby McFerrin & SFYCA

  • Jul 6, 2010
I have nothing against the wonders of reality television, but if you spent your Monday night watching “The Bachelorette,” you just missed a once in a lifetime concert experience.  I recently returned from watching the Oregon Bach Festival’s Stangeland Family Youth Choral Academy perform with Bobby McFerrin, and am absolutely astounded by what 85 high school students and a man with a microphone can communicate to an audience. The first half of the program showed off the SFYCA’s classical vocal chops, highlighted by the Kyrie from Bach’s Mass in B Minor led by Helmuth Rilling.  Working with Helmuth will certainly be... read more