Marianna Martines Dixit Dominus
Martines Concert Aria: Pensa a serbarmi, o cara
J.C. Bach Magnificat in C
W. A. Mozart Requiem in D Minor, K. 626 (Süssmayr)
Rita Lilly, soprano
Heidi L. Waterman, mezzo-soprano
Kyle Stegall, tenor
Nikolas Nackley, baritone
and the Jubilate Baroque Orchestra
“Mozart was an almost constant attendant at her parties, and I have heard him play duets on the piano-forte with her, of his own composition. She was a great favourite of his.”
—memoirs of Irish tenor Michael Kelley, 1820s
Don’t miss the chance to hear the first period-instrument performance of Viennese keyboardist, composer, and singer Marianna Martines’ masterpiece. Unjustly neglected, this talented and dedicated musician was a key figure in the musical salons of Vienna, and regularly played duets with Mozart. Dixit Dominus earned her the distinction of being the first woman admitted (100 years after its founding) to the Accademia Filarmonica of Bologna, an exclusive society of composers that still exists today.
Youngest son of J.S. Bach, Johann Christian Bach moved to London when he was just 27 years old. “John Bach,” as he was known in England, met the 8-year-old prodigy Mozart in London, and the two became fast friends and admirers of each other’s work. John Bach’s joyful Magnificat beautifully illustrates his melodic, Italianate style, which was a strong influence on the talented young Mozart.
We close our concert and season with Mozart’s powerful Requiem, commissioned by a mysterious, anonymous patron. Mozart, ill and convinced he was composing his own Requiem Mass, died before finishing the piece, which was completed from his extensive notes by his student, Süssmayr. Marked by the dark colors of basset horns, trombones, and bassoons, and by haunting harmonies, the Requiem remains one of Mozart’s most memorable and moving compositions.
Rita Lilly is familiar to audiences in oratorio, recital, and opera, but most notably for her performances of baroque and early music. She has been lauded by The New York Times for “possessing a voice of strength, clarity, and virtuosity” and by the S.F. Classical Voice for “having a pure, silvery voice with plenty of color.” Ms. Lilly is a native New Yorker who has appeared as a featured soloist with the American Boychoir, American Classical Orchestra, American Symphony Orchestra, Artek, Bachworks, Bach Aria Group, Clarion Music Society, Concert Royal, Rebel, Trinity Church Concerts Series, and the New York Consort of Viols, among others. As the soprano soloist of the Waverly Consort, she toured throughout the U.S. and abroad, including performances at N.Y.’s Alice Tully Hall, Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Cloisters. Ms. Lilly has been featured on live broadcasts on New York’s WNYC, WNCN, National Public Radio, and Radio-Canada.
Since coming to the Bay Area, Ms. Lilly has been a soloist with the Albany Consort, American Bach Soloists, Bay Choral Guild, Berkeley Community Chorus, California Bach Society, Cappella SF, Chora Nova, Contra Costa Chorale, Folger Consort, Magnificat, MUSA, Sacabuche, San Francisco Bach Choir, S.F. Renaissance Voices, and Sacramento Baroque.
Ms. Lilly’s recordings include three with the Waverly Consort on EMI; Handel and Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus with the American Boychoir on Musical Heritage; Scarlatti’s St. Cecilia Mass on Newport Classic; Sowerby’s Medieval Poem on Naxos; a German Baroque Christmas with American Classical Orchestra on Musicmasters; and Orff’s Carmina Burana with the Valley Concert Chorale.
Ms. Lilly served for five years as Music Director of St. Jerome Catholic Church in El Cerrito and is now the Music Director of the Lafayette Christian Church in Lafayette, Ca. She is on the faculty as voice teacher at the Pacific Boychoir Academy, and is the vocal instructor for the SFEMS Baroque Summer Workshop. Ms. Lilly has recently become the choir director for Mills College Choir and maintains an active vocal studio in her home.
Praised for her “…rich, lustrous tone and gorgeous legato” by San Francisco Classical Voice, Mezzo Soprano Heidi L. Waterman has enjoyed a wide-ranging career encompassing everything from film scores to early music to modern opera. She has performed as a soloist with the San Francisco Symphony, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Chorale, San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Bach Choir, and the American Bach Soloists, among others. Recent highlights include Christ Lag in Todesbanden and Handel’s Dixit Dominus with Schola Cantorum, the St. John Passion with San Francisco Bach Choir and Bay Choral Guild, and the small (but mighty) role of a Muse in Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra’s triumphant staging of Rameau’s Le Temple de la Gloire, recently released on CD.
Kyle Stegall is an artist dedicated equally to concert, opera, and recital stages; his performances characterized by an unfailing attention to style and detail, and a penetrating directness of communication. His collaborations with many of the world’s most celebrated artistic directors including Manfred Honeck, William Christie, Stephen Stubbs, and Nicholas McGegan have brought accolade from the New York Times, Sydney Morning Herald, and many others.
In demand as a symphonic soloist, he is heard frequently in the passions and cantatas of J.S. Bach. Mr. Stegall made his Lincoln Center debut as evangelist in Bach’s St. John Passion under the direction of Masaaki Suzuki. He is tenor soloist for the American Bach Soloists’ historic recording of Handel’s Messiah on Blu-Ray, and his solo album of Schumann lieder is set to be commercially released in the Spring of 2019.
This season’s highlights include his return to the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, a recital of Schubert’s Goethe-Lieder at the Green Music Center, creating the role of “Tommaso” in Laura Schwendiger’s new opera Artemisia, and the role of the evangelist in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with Bach Society Houston.
Mr. Stegall is a proud alumnus of the Universities of Missouri, Michigan, and Yale.
Baritone Nikolas Nackley is in demand for his work on both the concert and operatic stage. He has been heralded by the San Francisco Chronicle as “sonorous and heroic” and praised by the Boston Globe for his ability to “continually impress with his beautiful voice and acting.” Recently featured in the title role of West Edge Opera’s critically acclaimed Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria, Mr. Nackley returned to WEO this past summer to sing the role of Captain Bouchardon in the West Coast premiere Matt Mark’s opera Mata Hari. Recent credits include the role of Joe Pitt in the West Coast premiere of Peter Eötvös’s opera Angels in America with the Los Angeles Philharmonic; Adonis in John Blow’s Venus and Adonis with Marin Baroque; Bach’s St. John Passion with the SF Bach Choir, Santa Clara Chorale, and Bay Choral Guild; Figaro in Paisiello’s Barber of Seville with WEO’s Opera Medium Rare; Haydn’s The Seasons with Marin Oratorio; and the West Coast premiere of Kaija Saariaho’s “The Tempest Songbook” with Cal Performances. Mr. Nackley is currently on the faculty at the School of Music at SF State University and at UC Berkeley, where he is the director of vocal studies.