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Linda Cajigas
Jacobs School of Music

Alain Barker
Jacobs School of Music

Last modified: Friday, October 8, 2010

IU Pro Arte Singers group collaborates with Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra

Oct. 8, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Combining efforts with the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra, the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music Pro Arte Singers will present "The Saxon & the Priest," a program of virtuosic Italian works on Monday, Oct. 11, in Indianapolis and on Tuesday, Oct. 12, in Bloomington.

William Jon Gray and choir

William John Gray conducts the Pro Arte Singers.

Print-Quality Photo

"This is an exciting collaboration between the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra and the Pro Arte Singers," said Choral Department Chair William Jon Gray, who will conduct the concerts. "It gives Jacobs students access to professional instrumentalists, many of whom are alumni of the Early Music Institute."

In addition to alumni in the orchestra, Indianapolis Baroque founding member Barbara Kallaur is an adjunct faculty member who teaches Baroque flute in the Jacobs School.

The program will showcase Vivaldi's Gloria and Handel's Dixit Dominus, two masterful works that display a Venetian tendency for complex and energetic musical expression. "It's a very different Handel from the one we know as an English composer," Gray said. "Dixit Dominus is youthful and considered to be one of the composer's first great works. It shows how influenced he was by the Italian compositional style."

Performed on historical instruments and in period performance style, the concert offers a fresh perspective to Vivaldi's Gloria, one of the most celebrated pieces in the repertoire. Internationally recognized natural trumpeter Alexander Bonus will join the ensemble for the project.

The Indianapolis concert, at the Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center, Oct. 11, at 7:30 p.m., is ticketed ($20 general admission, $15 seniors, $5 students).

The Bloomington repeat performance the following evening, Oct. 12, at 7:30 p.m. at First United Church on East Third Street, is offered free.

The Pro Arte Singers

The Pro Arte Singers is a chamber chorus that performs medieval, renaissance and baroque choral repertoire. In addition to choral concerts, the ensemble performs semi-staged early theatrical works as well as chamber music with voices and instruments.

Previous directors of the Pro Arte Singers include John Poole, director of the B.B.C. Singers from 1972 to 1989, and Paul Hilliard, director of the Hilliard Ensemble and Theater of Voices.

The Joshi Foundation recently commissioned John Harbison's A Clear Midnight (2009) for the Pro Arte Singers. The ensemble performed and toured with performances of Bach's B-Minor Mass and the Monteverdi Vespers. In addition to early music, the ensemble regularly ventures into new music and is a major interpreter of the symphonic-choral works of Sven David Sandström.

The Pro Arte Singers often collaborates with the Early Music Institute of Indiana University, combining forces with the large instrumental ensemble Concentus.

The Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra

Celebrating its 12th season as the University of Indianapolis Ensemble-in-Residence, the Indianapolis Baroque Orchestra performs on period instruments and specializes in the music of 1600 to 1800. The orchestra, an ensemble of IndyBaroque Music Inc., is led by Artistic Director Barthold Kuijken.

To learn more about the IU Jacobs School of Music, visit