Burning River Baroque Performs Music That Portrays Women as Crazy


Wed 3/22 @ noon

Wed 3/22 @ 7:30PM

Thu 3/23 @ 6:30PM

Burning River Baroque was formed just four years ago three years ago, adding another ensemble to join groups such as Apollo’s Fire and Les Delices in presenting baroque music to local (and sometimes not so local — they’ve performed in New York, Boston, Chicago and Berkeley) audiences. The group is co-directed by vocalist/baroque violin & cello player Malina Rauschenfels and harpsichord/organ player Paula Maust, who bring other players on as needed.

The duo will be joined by baroque cellist Anna Steinhoff for their upcoming program, which sounds like it will be sizzling! It’s titled “On the Brink of Insanity: Portrayals of Women as Mad, Crazy and Unhinged.”

“Dramatic musical works often contain scenes of overwhelming emotion in which male characters are frequently portrayed as being consumed by power,” they explain. “When women are overcome with emotion, however, male composers often attribute madness or craziness to them. Burning River Baroque will present a selection of works by George Frideric Handel, John Eccles, and Henry Purcell where women’s passions and emotional expressions render them as unhinged in the eyes of their creators.”

The program will also include an original composition by Rauschenfels based on texts from the Salem witch trial of Bridget Bishop.

“This fusion of new and old works will shed light on how the ways we describe those who are different from us can have very real and long-lasting effects on the community at large,” they say.

They’ll perform at Lakewood Presbyterian Church; it’s suggested $10-$20 donation. Earlier that day they’ll limber up with a 45-minute concert “Women in Music: Love, Rage and Inspiration” at Trinity Cathedral as part of its Brownbag concert series at noon. That’s free, with a free-will offering taken.

They’ll also do an informal performance the following evening at Stone Oven in Cleveland Heights. That’s free, although they will gratefully accept any donations you care to make. Then they’ll head west for the weekend where they’ll perform in Chicago and in the Chicago suburb of Park Ridge, the childhood home of Hillary Clinton. Tell your Windy City friends!


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