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“A dispetto del tempo e della sorte” (in defiance of time and fate). duoSeraphim

duoSeraphim presents a thorough exploration of Barbara Strozzi’s oeuvre -- and what made her voice so singular. She thrived as an independent woman in an era of absolute male dominance in every arena, all the while writing music of exquisite beauty and integrity, perhaps exceeding any other 17th century monodist. As a prolific composer and virtuoso singer (learning the trade from her father, a collaborator of Monteverdi’s) Strozzi defied many stereotypes of 17th-century Italian musician-hood and womanhood. As an unmarried mother of four in a society where reputation meant everything, and with no courtly patronage, Strozzi was a self-assured woman with business acumen who, by contrast, showed vulnerability through her body of work, which reveals to us that she was well-acquainted with love, loss, heartbreak.

Soprano Sarah Hawkey and viola da gambist Niccolo Seligmann are duoSeraphim, an ensemble bringing new perspectives to old repertoire, performing rarely heard music with intimacy and verve, and approaching historical performance with masterful ease and delightful enthusiasm. Now in their third season, they are touring their program of French baroque music centered on the songs of Moulinié, as well as their program of Italian songs exploring the baroque mastery of Monteverdi, Strozzi, and the predecessors to their masterful monody. duoSeraphim is also devoted to championing new works for gamba and voice. They were awarded a new music residency at Avaloch Farm Music Institute where they began workshopping a song cycle titled Matriarch with their composer-in-residence Abraham Z. Morrison. The 2018-2019 season includes the release of their first album, featuring the duo's core repertoire from the French and Italian baroque, as well as works by contemporary composers, including Matriarch and a re-imagined piece by Pulitzer Prize-winner Du Yun. We are overjoyed to return for our third season with the GEMS series. Please visit duoseraphim.org to learn more.

Sarah Hawkey, soprano
Niccolo Seligmann, viola da gamba

1:15 - 2:00 pm
All concerts are free; no tickets or reservations are necessary.

The Chapel at St. Bartholomew's Church
50th St. and Park Avenue


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.