I FURIOSI stirs the heart with Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater

For fans of this ensemble who are probably wondering, there was a musical display of their ‘serious irreverence’ that came at the very end.


On Saturday night at the Winderemere United Church, I FURIOSI presented a program of great solemnity and artistry headlined by Pergolesi’s iconic work of the Baroque period, Stabat Mater, featuring guest musicians mezzo-soprano Vicky St. Pierre, violist Pemi Paull, and conductor/composer Stephanie Martin on the organ.

The Baroque Era was all about extremes of the senses. The paintings and architectures of the time in Europe are easily identifiable by their incredible ornateness, the lushness of details and an overall sense of drama. Even the music embodied the tension of standardized form and individuality. It’s the musical works that managed to master both continue to inspire us.

Musicians and composers of the time had near rock star status during the Baroque period, or so I FURIOSI would like to imagine, which explains they way they set their early-music concerts against edgy attire of leather pants in an attempt to bring a slice of history to today’s audiences. It’s a formula that has creates a variety of artistic possibilities for this ensemble for 15 years. By the warm enthusiasm displayed by the audience last night, it might be one of the secret ingredients to garnering a loyal following. Read on…

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