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268 Elinor FreyThe Bach cello suites continue to engage and attract audiences and performers alike. They have also served as a reference point for solo cello music in the centuries following their composition. Although these suites were not a direct inspiration for Smith’s “Ricercar”, many similarities and links are notable: an emphasis on open strings, triumphant quadruple-stop chords, contrasting sections that alternate between energized and dancing music and other slower passages of a subdued and reflective nature.
— Elinor Frey, Ricercar (2015)

I have always been drawn to music of the Baroque period. I grew up playing Bach, first on piano, later on the harpsichord. I love the sound of the Baroque cello, so I was very excited to write this new work for Elinor Frey (commissioned by Daniel Cooper). I think of this piece as a melody in search of its harmony. There is a dance-like melodic line at the beginning; it becomes lost into spareness and stillness, and later there is the appearance of a melodic chain of chords. My thanks go to Elinor Frey for suggesting the title (Ricercar means “to search out”), and for her beautiful interpretation of my music.
— Linda Catlin Smith

Midtown Concerts sponsors lunchtime performances of music of the 18th century and earlier. Ensembles are chosen by a panel of early music specialists from the metropolitan area.

Time: Thursdays, 1:15–2:00 pm
All concerts are free; no tickets or reservations are necessary.

Concerts are in person at St. Malachy's Church, 239 West 49th Street, Manhattan, AND live streamed.