Orchestra of St. Luke’s
Orchestra of St. Luke's
Bernard Labadie, Principal Conductor
Benjamin Bowman, Violin
CHARPENTIER Prelude to Te Deum in D Major, H. 146
J. S. BACH An imaginary concerto for violin (with excerpts from Easter Oratorio, BWV 249, and Sinfonia in D Major, BWV 1045)
HANDEL Water Music (complete)
Event DurationThe printed program will last approximately 75 minutes with no intermission.
At a Glance
Orchestra of St. Luke’s returns to Carnegie Hall with a vivacious program of Baroque delights. The evening opens majestically with Marc-Antoine Charpentier’s triumphal Prelude to his Te Deum in D Major, followed by an “imaginary concerto for violin” assembled from Johann Sebastian Bach’s works, and featuring ensemble member and Met Orchestra concertmaster Benjamin Bowman as soloist. The evening reaches regal splendor with a complete performance of George Frideric Handel’s joyous Water Music. Initially commissioned for a barge party for King George I on the River Thames in London, Water Music remains a crowning masterpiece of the composer’s legacy.
Orchestra of St. Luke's
Orchestra of St. Luke’s (OSL) evolved from a group of virtuoso musicians who began performing chamber music concerts at Greenwich Village’s Church of St. Luke in the Fields in 1974. Regular seasons see OSL perform in diverse musical genres at New York’s major concert venues, drawing on an expanded roster for large-scale works and collaborating with artists who range from Joshua Bell and Renée Fleming to Bono and Metallica. The orchestra has commissioned more than 50 new works and has given more than 175 world, US, and New York City premieres; in addition, it has participated in 118 recordings, four of which have been recognized with Grammy Awards. Internationally celebrated for his expertise in 18th-century music, Bernard Labadie was appointed OSL’s principal conductor in 2018, continuing the orchestra’s long tradition of working with proponents of historical performance practice. In 2011, OSL opened The DiMenna Center for Classical Music, New York City’s only rehearsal, recording, education, and performance space expressly dedicated to classical music. The center serves more than 500 ensembles and 30,000 musicians each year.
Widely recognized as one of the world’s leading conductors of Baroque, Classical, and early-Romantic repertoire, Bernard Labadie made his debut with Orchestra of St. Luke’s (OSL) as principal conductor designate at the Caramoor Summer Music Festival in July 2017. Now as OSL’s fifth principal conductor he joins the distinguished roster of Pablo Heras-Casado (2011–2017), Roger Norrington (1990–1994), Charles Mackerras (1998–2001), and Donald Runnicles (2001–2007). Mr. Labadie received an honorary doctor of musical arts degree from the Manhattan School of Music in May 2018.
In addition to his appearances with OSL, Mr. Labadie made guest appearances during the 2019–2020 season with the Toronto, Chicago, Dallas, and Finnish Radio symphony orchestras; National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa); Orchestre symphonique de Québec; Los Angeles Philharmonic; Utah Symphony; and Handel and Haydn Society. The French-Canadian Mr. Labadie founded the celebrated chamber orchestra Les Violons du Roy in 1984 and brought it to international renown. After 30 years, he stepped down as music director in 2014. Mr. Labadie is a regular guest conductor with all the major North American orchestras, and has appeared locally with the New York Philharmonic and Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra. His notable European engagements include performances with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, and Royal Scottish National Orchestra, as well as frequent assignments with period-instrument orchestras that include the Academy of Ancient Music, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, The English Concert, and Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin. An eminent opera conductor, Mr. Labadie has served as artistic director of Opéra de Québec and Opéra de Montréal. He made his Metropolitan Opera debut during the 2009–2010 season with Mozart’s The Magic Flute.
Mr. Labadie’s extensive discography includes many critically acclaimed recordings on the Dorian, ATMA, and Virgin Classics labels, including Apollo e Dafne, and a collaborative recording of Mozart’s Requiem with Les Violons du Roy and La Chapelle de Québec—both of which received Canada’s Juno Award.
American-Canadian violinist Benjamin Bowman was recently appointed concertmaster of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra by Music Director Yannick Nézét-Seguin. He is a member of the Orchestra of St. Luke’s and until recently was also concertmaster of the American Ballet Theatre Orchestra.
Mr. Bowman is active and engaged as a chamber musician, recitalist, and soloist, and he regularly performs in concerts and festivals across Europe and North America. Most recently, he was nominated for a 2017 Grammy Award for his recording with the ARC (Artists of the Royal Conservatory) Ensemble titled Chamber Works of Jerzy Fitelberg; in addition, he was featured on the 2013 Juno Award–winning album Levant with the Amici Chamber Ensemble. Other collaborative work includes extensive immersion in contemporary music, improvisation, and performances with various singer-songwriters. His discography includes recent solo and chamber-music releases on the Chandos, Sony Masterworks / RCA Red Seal, ATMA Classique, and Innova labels.
Mr. Bowman received his bachelor of music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. He plays a Giovanni Battista Guadagnini violin kindly loaned to him by Irene R. Miller through the Beare’s International Violin Society.