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Bitterroot Baroque presents Musica Pacifica

Bitterroot Baroque presents Musica Pacifica

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Bitterroot Baroque is presenting San Francisco’s Musica Pacifica as they perform rarely heard music from Naples, Italy, on Friday, Jan. 13.

Dolci di Napoli is the music of Mancini, Fiorenza, Matteis, Barbella and both Scarlattis and will be performed by Judith Linsenberg (recorder), Elizabeth Blumenstock and Katherine Kyme (baroque violins), Tekla Cunningham (baroque viola), William Skeen (baroque cello) and Charles Sherman (harpsichord).

“Musica Pacifica describes themselves as sizzling on their website, and it’s true,” said Alex Shaffer, president of Bitterroot Baroque. “This group has a great reputation and a long history of inspired music making. They just celebrated their silver anniversary, and Bitterroot Baroque is very excited to have them in Montana for the first time.”

Bitterroot Baroque, Inc. formed as a nonprofit organization, in 2015, in Hamilton to bring beautiful historical music to the community. Bitterroot Baroque fosters cultural enrichment by having baroque music, written 1600 to 1760, played on the unique instruments of the same period. The group brings professional musicians and ensembles to the community for performance, workshops, master classes and private lessons. The nonprofit also presents programs to school students and facilitates early music collaborations throughout Montana.

Bitterroot Baroque’s newest board member Sarah Stone lives in New York City, plays baroque cello and viola da gamba professionally, and is the organization’s East Coast liaison and webmaster.

Stone is a graduate of Julliard’s Historical Performance program.

“She loves Montana and has played here on numerous occasions,” Shaffer said. “Sarah and I recently co-wrote a grant to bring her string quartet to Hamilton next fall to be in residence here for a week and play in many different venues. Wish us luck; grant recipients to be announced next March.”

Baroque violinist Elizabeth Blumenstock, in a YouTube video, said her violin was built in 1620 and survived nearly 350 years in beautiful condition. She said older instruments sound different and that richness is “mostly experienced under the ear of the person playing.”

“This instrument is incredibly clear,” Blumenstock said. “You have the sense that the wood has been thoroughly aged, dare I say, like a good wine. The wood is like it has been clarified and sound just flows through it.”

Shaffer said Musica Pacifica’s presence in the Bitterroot Valley “is a real tribute to our success as a presenter organization and to the enthusiasm of our audiences that some of the top early music ensembles from around the country now want to perform in Hamilton.”

The Musica Pacifica concert hosted by Bitterroot Baroque will be performed at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 13 at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 600 S. 3rd St. in Hamilton. Tickets cost $25 general mission, $10 students, and pay-as-you-are-able, are on sale at Chapter One Book Store and at the door. For more information call 314-852-5099 or email


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