March 29, 2002
Baroque meets MTV at CSUS concert
17th century Baroque music accompanied by the silky vocals
of five women prancing around in bike shorts and sunglasses,
playfully trying to upstage each other like it was a game.
It's a typical Bimbetta show and they will give Sacramento
audiences a taste of that fun at 8 p.m., Sunday, April 14.
The concert is at California State University, Sacramento
in the Music Recital Hall in Capistrano Hall and is part of
the University's 10th annual Festival of the Arts in conjunction
with the New Millennium Concert Series.
Bimbetta's imaginative use of costumes is only one of the
things that has won them considerable acclaim from critics
at the Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles
Village View and many other publications. Their creative use
of stage, lights, props and references to today's pop culture
has been repetitively described as a "blend of cabaret,
commedia dell'arte and MTV unplugged."
Bimbetta, is an ensemble of five women from Indiana who were
tired of the formal format that goes with performing classical
music. That's when they banded together in 1993 to form Bimbetta
and to make a statement.
"When we perform in concert, we use theatrical staging
and lighting, humor, women's views and American popular culture
both between and during the music to convey a setting, a mood,
a snapshot of the text - all to create a bridge between the
original and contemporary experience. We are building a bridge
not only from the past to the present, but also from the stage
to your living room," Bimbetta states on their web site.
Building a bridge from the past to the present seems to be
easy for these talented women. Bimbetta creates vivid performances
of music from the early Baroque period using early period
instruments, a harpsichord and a cello, and vocal styles.
Through their new style Bimbetta aims to deconstruct the typical
idea of 17th century music and transform it into something
of grace and splendor. Within the four years they have been
together, they have been very successful in taking the music
of the Baroque from its distant home and bringing it into
the 20th century.
Sonja Rasmussen, Andrea Fullington and Allison Zelles are
all professionally trained sopranos from the Early Music Institute
at Indiana University School of Music in Bloomington. Their
resumes are filled with several distinguished performances
ranging from the European Hessian Chamber Orchestra to the
Seattle Baroque Orchestra.
Shelley Taylor and Katherine Shao have also performed worldwide.
Taylor is the cellist who performs regularly with Zephyrus
Baroque Ensemble, of which she is a founding member. Shao
has played her harpsichord with ensembles and festivals across
the country, including the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra.
Tickets for the event are $15 and are available at the CSUS
Ticket Office at (916) 278-4323. Additional media assistance
is available at the CSUS office of public affairs at (916)
For further information, send an e-mail
public affairs at (916) 278-6156. For ticketed events, call
the CSUS Ticket Office at (916) 278-4323.
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