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Pacific Baroque Festival 2024 Plays February 27-Mar 3

A 20th Anniversary Celebration!

Victoria, BC – The Pacific Baroque Festival returns for its landmark 20th iteration, enchanting audiences in Victoria from February 27th-March 3rd. Titled, ‘In Modern Style – Music from 17th Century Italy’, this week-long celebration delves into the music of an era marked by rapid innovation in forms and styles. Presented in collaboration with the Victoria Conservatory of Music and Christ Church Cathedral, the Festival promises a week of captivating performances from specialized musicians on period instruments, offering an authentic interpretation of these historic pieces.

The Festival opens with two distinct performances by renowned guest organist Edoardo Bellotti designed to showcase the growth and influence of 200 years of Italian baroque keyboard music through an intriguing combination of instrument. The first concert, in the intimate ambiance of St Barnabas Church, will feature early baroque gems on both a harpsichord and the simple but remarkable one-manual organ built by Joseph Brombaugh. The following evening brings a more resplendent concert of later baroque masterpieces on the renowned Helmutt Wolff organ at Christ Church Cathedral. Mr. Bellotti, a professor of Harpsichord, Organ, and Historical Keyboards at the Eastman School of Music, curated these programs to reflect the regional nuances of Baroque Italian music, complementing each other nicely.

Artistic director Marc Destrubé then leads the Festival’s core ensemble of cellist Natalie Mackie and harpsichordist Marco Vitale in a relaxed morning concert at Alix Goolden Performance Hall which will shine a light on the nascent ‘stile moderno’ that announced the beginning of baroque music to the world. The following evening, the trio will be joined by violinist Kathryn Wiebe, sackbut players Robert Fraser and Jeremy Berkman, and baroque harpist Antoine Malette-Chénier for ‘Sonate Concertate’. The flourishing of instrumental music in 17th century northern Italy gave composers free reign to explore a conversational (‘concertate’) style, exploring the interplay between string and wind instruments. Finally, ‘Songs of Love and War’ includes selections from the iconic Claudio Monteverdi’s Eighth book of Madrigals, with the ensemble being joined by an octet of some of Victoria’s finest singers to bring these works to life.

"We are delighted to present the Pacific Baroque Festival 2024, a festival that brings together exceptional talent to celebrate the timeless beauty of Baroque music," says Marc Destrubé, Artistic Director of the Pacific Baroque Festival for the past 20 years. "The beginning of the 17th century ushered in the baroque style in music; composers, notably in Italy, made a radical departure from the complex polyphony of the late 16th century in favour of more directly expressive music. Our goal is to create an immersive experience that transports audiences to the blossoming infancy of the Baroque era, sharing our appreciation and passion for the music of this innovative period.”


2023 Pacific Baroque Festival – In Modern Style – Music from 17th Century Italy

Dates: February 27 – March 3, 2024 

Tickets: Single - $30 + Tax & fees

Seniors/Students - $25 + Tax & fees

Festival passes: $100; $80 for Seniors/Students + tax & fees


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