Pioneer Valley Cappella: works by Jommelli, Handel and Mozart

Edwards Church, 297 Main St, Northampton (139 South Street, Northampton MA 01060)


Pioneer Valley Cappella, led by music director Geoffrey Hudson, performs on Friday, May 3rd at Edward’s Church in Northampton at 7:30PM.

Pioneer Valley Cappella’s spring concert focuses on the serene and glowing Requiem of Niccolo Jommelli. Born and educated in Naples, Jommelli composed for opera houses across Italy and spent his later years as a court composer in Vienna and Stuttgart. He was an important transitional figure between the Baroque and Classical styles and exerted significant influence on later composers, including Stamitz and Mozart.

Jommelli’s Requiem, composed in 1756, was the best-known setting of the text until Mozart’s unfinished version. The music is characterized by a luminous intimacy, conveying a profound message of consolation. Jommelli’s style is filled with delicious harmonies and infused with subtle rhythmic energy. , Performed with string ensemble, PVC’s performances afford Valley audiences a rare opportunity to hear this neglected masterpiece.

The program begins with short choruses by Handel and Mozart, which place Jommelli’s music in contrast with typical examples of the Baroque and Classical styles.

Geoffrey Hudson conducts Pioneer Valley Cappella, accompanied by an instrumental ensemble: Colleen Jennings and Kaila Graef, violins; Charlotte Malin, viola; Karl Knapp, cello; and Gregory Hayes, organ.

Admission is by free will donation.