Edith Hines, violin † John Chappell Stowe, organ and harpsichord


Ensemble SDG, a violin and keyboard duo formed in 2009,

performs music spanning the entire Baroque period, with a

particular focus on the works of Johann Sebastian Bach.

Friday, July 6, 2012

A busy summer

Yes, we know it’s been a long time since we posted an update on our activities.  Over Memorial Day weekend we did, at last, finish the actual recording part of our complete Bach project.  We took great pleasure in working with the Noack organ at Christ the King Evangelical Lutheran Church in Houston and were disappointed only that we didn’t get to use a broader palette of the instrument’s colors.  (The violin can only handle so much sound!)  Since the organ was designed to emulate instruments of Gottfried Silbermann and Zacharias Hildebrandt, organ builders well known to Bach, it features a number of distinctive stops at 8-foot and 4-foot pitch, which served well for this particular recording.  The staff and parishioners of Christ the King Lutheran couldn’t have been more gracious to us.  While in Houston Chappy discovered all kinds of personal connections with Pastors Robert Moore and Karin Liebster! 

We also got to participate in the church’s Pentecost services on May 27, playing while a congregational survey was taking place.  That was a first for both of us!

We have now moved on to the editing phase of the recording project.  It looks like the finished product will occupy three discs, and we have tentatively established an order for the pieces and are in the early stages of writing liner notes.  For the sake of full disclosure, we’ll admit that although this project is designed to be comprehensive, with all of J. S. Bach’s works for violin and keyboard, we have decided against including the third extant version of the Sonata in G, BWV 1019—for reasons to be explained in the liner notes.  We are still looking for a company to take on the project and market the finished recording.  Any suggestions out there?

Our most recent efforts have been in preparation for a recital on July 17, 2012, at the Cleveland Institute of Music, Edith’s undergraduate alma mater.  For the last four Tuesdays in July, the CIM Alumni Association presents a “Lunch & Listen” recital series featuring alumni of the school.  Edith is excited not only to perform at CIM for the first time in ten years (she was class of ’02), but also to perform for the first time in the school’s critically acclaimed Mixon Hall.  Our program will include a suite of dances from Giovanni Bonaventura Viviani’s Capricci Armonici of 1678, the fourth Concert Royal by François Couperin, the Sonata in D for violin and continuo by Johann Georg Pisendel, and the Sonata in E for violin and obbligato harpsichord by J. S. Bach.  We’ll be using the school’s 1974 William Dowd French double harpsichord.  Find more information about the recital here.

But before we head to Cleveland, Chappy spends a week on the faculty of the Madison Early Music Festival, whose theme this year is music of the North American colonies and the early United States.  It’s a busy summer!

After Cleveland, we’ll post on our early fall projects.  Madison friends, take heart: we will finally be performing in town again come September!