Weekend MusicWatch

It's Bachtober in Oregon

Spring forward, fall Bach: It’s Octobaroque as music of J.S. Bach and other Baroque composers erupts around Oregon this weekend, but there’s plenty of new music — from China, Africa, Scandinavia, Spain, South America, and even Oregon — on Oregon stages too, along with much music from between those eras. Packed as this calendar is, if you know of other shows worth catching, please alert our readers in the comments section below.

Daby Touré 
October 14
Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 NE Alberta Street. Portland.
Read my Willamette Week preview of the Afropop star’s appearance with his band.

“The Crossroads Project: Rising Tide” October 15
Newmark Theatre, 1111 SW Broadway, Portland.
Read my Willamette Week preview of the show that combines music, imagery and a talk about climate change.

Oregon Symphony
October 15
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, Portland.
One of classical music’s best known celebrity soloists, Lang Lang, stars in a program of some of the most overplayed classical chestnuts (Offenbach’s overture to Orpheus in the Underworld, Grieg’s Piano Concerto, Dvořák’s Symphony No. 8) in a program probably best suited to relative classical music newcomers.

Former Eugene Symphony music director Miguel Harth-Bedoya returns to conduct the orchestra on Thursday. Photo: Richard Rodriguez.

Former Eugene Symphony music director Miguel Harth-Bedoya returns to conduct the orchestra on Thursday. Photo: Richard Rodriguez.

Eugene Symphony
October 15
Silva Concert Hall, Eugene.
Read my Eugene Weekly preview of the return of former ESO music director Miguel Harth-Bedoya in the most enticing and intriguing Oregon classical orchestral program of the month.

Cascadia Composers
October 16
Mago Hunt recital hall, University of Portland, 5000 N. Willamette Blvd. Portland.
Some of the city’s most adventurous musicians (percussionist Florian Conzetti, singer Catherine Olson, saxophonist Patrick McCulley, pianist Jeff Payne) and others play music for relatively unusual instrumental combinations (including sax, harp, accordion and more) by some of the region’s top composers, including Susan Alexjander, Michael Johanson, Jack Gabel, and more.

“A Night in Ancient and New China”
Shanghai Quartet & Wu Man
October 16
7:30 pm Friday. Kaul Auditorium, Reed College. Portland.
Read my Willamette Week preview of this terrific Friends of Chamber Music concert of contemporary and traditional Chinese and Chinese American classical music.

Paul Galbraith brings his special guitar back to Portland.

Paul Galbraith brings his special guitar and special skills back to Portland.

Paul Galbraith
October 16
St. Anne’s Chapel, Marylhurst University, 17600 Pacific Highway (Hwy. 43), Marylhurst.
One of the world’s greatest guitarists plays transcriptions of music by J.S. Bach and Mozart, and a recent guitar sonata by contemporary composer Manfred Trojahn.

“High Baroque Winds”
Portland Baroque Orchestra, October 16-17, First Baptist Church, SW 12th and Taylor St. October 18, Kaul Auditorium, Reed College, 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd. Portland.
The ever-astounding violinist/director Monica Huggett leads two of PBO’s top soloists, world-renowned oboist Gonzalo Ruiz (who plays the oboe like “the electric guitar of the 18th century” his research reveals it was) and stellar young bassoon phenom Nate Helgesson (who also shows how that instrument used to play a much more prominent role than it does today) in a program of music by J.S. Bach (one of his popular Brandenburg Concertos), the less well-known but estimable Johann Friederich Fasch, and the most renowned composer (in their time) of the era, the astonishingly prolific Georg Philipp Telemann.

“The Leipzig Candidates”
The Wildwood Consort, October 17, house concert (teservation required), Oct. 18, St. Michael & All Angels Church, 1704 NE 43rd Ave., Portland.
Here’s a musical candidates’ debate. In a perfect pairing with PBO’s concerts, you can hear more chamber and vocal music by Telemann and Bach, at a more intimate scale, along with music by the third candidate for the job that the third choice, Bach, eventually won when the other two declined: Christoph Graupner, whose prolific output was lost for centuries. Suggestion: don’t read the program first, and decide yourself in a blind test which you would have chosen for Leipzig St. Thomas church cantor. (And no, Trump was not on this ballot.)

Anonymous 4
October 17
Kaul Auditorium, 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd. Portland.
Read my Willamette Week preview of the superb vocal ensemble’s final Oregon performance.

Ensemble Primo Seicento
October 17
Atrium courtyard, 10th and Olive, Eugene.
In still another Baroque bash, the historically informed ensemble sings and plays some of the earliest music of that period, from early 17th century northern Italy by Marini, Cavalli, Castello, and more.

“Northern Lights”
Portland Chamber Orchestra, Oct.17, Nordia House, Nordia House, 8800 SW Oleson Rd, Portland. Oct.18, Lewis and Clark College, Agnes Flanagan Chapel, Portland.
Along with celebrating the 150th birth years of Carl Nielsen (with his mighty Flute Concerto featuring stalwart Oregon Symphony soloist Jessica Sindell) and Jean Sibelius, with his Andante Festivo and the varied 1904 incidental music he wrote for a production of Maeterlinck’s play Pelléas and Mélisande (which Schoenberg and Debussy also set to music). Happily, the Pelleas music will be performed in something resembling its original context, with a semi-staged, edited version of the play. The concert will also be accompanied by an exhibition chronicling the history of PCO, which was founded by Finnish composer Boris Sirpo. OAW’s own visual arts maven Bob Hicks will display a slide show of appropriate paintings he chose for the occasion.

Dvorák’s Stabat Mater
Oregon Repertory Singers, Vancouver Symphony, October 17-18, Newmark Theater, 1111 SW Broadway, Portland.
Two Oregon classical institutions join forces to present a rare performance of one of the 19th century’s great sacred choral orchestral creations.

Lamiae Naki and Nat Hulskamp perform at Seffarine's CD release concert.

Lamiae Naki and Nat Hulskamp perform at Seffarine’s CD release concert.

October 18
Alberta Rose Theatre, Portland.
The fine Portland based world music ensemble returns with a new CD, recorded in Jerez, Spain with gypsy flamenco masters. The CD release concert includes Spanish dancer Manuel Gutierrez and Gypsy flamenco singer José Cortés joining local Persian kamancheh (spike fiddle) and sehtar (Persian lute) master Bobak Salehi, bassist Damian Erskine, Madagascar native Portland percussionist Manavihare Fiaindratovo, and the founding duo: Moroccan singer Lamiae Naki and composer/oud player/flamenco guitarist Nat Hulskamp.

“Dianne Davies Has Fallen Off Her Bench”
October 18
Community Music Center, 3350 SE Francis, Portland.
The musical humorist and crack interpreter of Oregon composers offers the latest edition of her classical comedy show, inspired by Victor Borge, Carol Burnett, Liberace, Weird Al, and more.

Dianne Davies will perform and off her bench Sunday.

Dianne Davies will perform and off her bench Sunday.

Oregon Bach Collegium
October 18
United Lutheran Church, 22nd and Washington, Eugene.
What, more Baroque? More Bach? Yes indeedy, and this one features yet another dimension of J.S. Bach’s masterful music: a pair of his glorious cantatas (58 and 209), performed by singers Heather Holmquest and Thor Mikesell, with violinist Holly Roberts and flutist Sarah Pyle on period instruments.

Portland Taiko, Kenny Endo Taiko Ensemble 
October 18
St. Anne’s Chapel, Marylhurst University, 17600 Pacific Highway (Hwy. 43), Marylhurst.
Read my Willamette Week preview of the return of the venerable Portland percussion ensemble with guest stars from Los Angeles.

Pacific Youth Choir
October 18
Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Portland.
Choral conductor, composer, and Temple University prof Rollo Dilworth leads the young choristers.

VSO Chamber Series
October 18
Kiggins Theatre, 1011 Main St. Vancouver, Washington.
Five Vancouver pianists perform one- and two-piano music by Debussy, Milhaud, Liszt, Seattle native William Bolcom, Gershwin, and Harold Arlen.

45th Parallel
October 19
The Old Church, 1422 S.W. 11th Ave. Portland.
A quintet of Oregon Symphony musicians plays one of Beethoven’s Razumovsky string quartets and Mendelssohn’s A major string quintet.

Golden Retriever Chamber Ensemble
October 20 & 21
The Old Church, 1422 S.W. 11th Ave. Portland.
The ever-inventive experimental music duo (synthesist Matt Carlson and bass clarinetist Jonathan Sielaff), augmented by a chamber ensemble of string quartet, wind quartet, piano, percussion, vibes, pipe organ, and synthesizer, perform a big new composition.

Garth-Bedoya leads Zaraspe dancers and Eugene Symphony members in rehearsal for Thursday's concert.

Garth-Bedoya leads Zaraspe dancers and Eugene Symphony members in rehearsal for Thursday’s concert.

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