March music: Ton Koopman, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, Genius of Bach

Conductor Ton Koopman, an authority on Baroque music, and his Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir will perform some of the greatest and loveliest works of Johann Sebastian Bach March 13 and 14.

Koopman, renowned elder statesman of the authentic performance movement, founded the orchestra in 1979. The ensemble will perform Bach’s Mass in B minor (March 13), and his cantatas 104 and Cantata 147 as well as the Magnificat in D major (March 14).

The works of Bach are Amsterdam Baroque’s home ground after a 10-year quest to record all of Bach’s cantatas—more than 200 choral works—on 22 CDs. Koopman and his forces are considered the supreme exponents at negotiating Bach’s Mass in B minor. The Independent of London called the orchestra and choir “a revelation in every respect,” and The New York Times called their performances “delectable.”

Tickets are $25–$64 for general public and $10 for UNC-Chapel Hill students. To purchase, go to www.carolinaperformingarts.org or call the Memorial Hall Box Office at (919) 843-3333.

In conjunction with the concerts, Caroling Performing Arts and the Friday Center for Continuing Education will present The Genius of Bach lecture series March 6 and 7 at the Friday Center. Dr. James Moeser, Chancellor Emeritus of UNC-Chapel Hill and faculty member in the music department, will deliver the lectures, scheduled from 7 to 9 p.m. each night.

During the March 6 lecture, Moeser will explore the musical architecture of Mass in B minor. The March 7 lecture will focus on the March 14 program of the two cantatas and Magnificant. In both lectures, Moeser will discuss the legacy and impact of Koopman’s career in Baroque music.

Registration is $50 per person and includes admission to both lectures and one ticket to see Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir. Tickets for this offer have a face value of $45 and will be located in Section A of Memorial Hall. Tickets will be held at the Memorial Hall Box Office Will Call for pick-up on the day of the performance. Register for the talks.

Prior to both concerts, Moeser will host an informal half-hour discussion on the works that will be presented. The talks, part of Classical Conversations, are free and open to the public. 6:30 p.m., March 13 & 14, Gerrard Hall.