Step back to a flamboyant moment in musical history with cellist Elinor Frey and Rosa Barocca under the direction of Claude Lapalme. Not only is Elinor Frey an accomplished and expressive musician, her expertise in the history of string instruments illuminates this performance. Together with Rosa Barocca, this concert program invites you to experience the radiance and dynamism of Baroque music in Italy – and to understand the evolution of the instruments themselves. With a program featuring material from their 2023 Juno award-winning album, the ensemble highlights the spectacular flair of early Italian cello concerts from the Baroque era.
“Along with Rosa Barocca’s committed and dynamic playing, Elinor Frey’s period sensitive and highly expressive interpretations teleport the spirit of a baroque ensemble (minus the powdered wigs of course)…”
– Classical Music Sentinel
photo | Elizabeth Delage
Elinor Frey is a leading Canadian-American cellist, gambist, and researcher. Many of her albums on the Belgian label Passacaille and Canadian label Analekta are world premiere recordings. They include Giuseppe Clemente Dall’Abaco Cello Sonatas (winner of a Diapason d’Or) and Early Italian Cello Concertos (winner of the 2023 JUNO Award for Classical Album of the Year – Small Ensemble). Elinor’s critical editions of Dall’Abaco’s cello music are published in collaboration with Walhall Editions.
Elinor is the artistic director of Accademia de’ Dissonanti, an organization for performance and research. She has appeared throughout the Americas and in Europe in recital and with numerous chamber ensembles and orchestras, including Rosa Barocca, Constantinople, Les idées heureuses, Il Gardellino, Tafelmusik, and the Pacific Baroque Orchestra.). In March 2023, Elinor performed Boccherini and Sammartini concertos with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra.
Elinor holds degrees from McGill, Mannes, and Juilliard, and is the recipient of dozens of grants and prizes supporting performance and research, including the US-Italy Fulbright Fellowship studying with Paolo Beschi in Como, Italy, and a recent research residency at the Orpheus Institute in Ghent. She teaches Baroque cello and performance practice at McGill University and the Université de Montréal, and is a Visiting Fellow in Music (2020–2023) at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford University. In 2021, Frey was awarded Québec’s Opus Prize for “Performer of the Year.”
Rosa Barocca’s mission is to present Alberta audiences with historically-informed performances of Baroque music. They use period instruments to capture the spirit, stylistic approach and distinctive sound of that glorious musical era. Comprised of musicians from across Canada, the newly-minted ensemble debuted in November 2016 with two greatly acclaimed performances of Purcell’s “Hail! Bright Cecilia” in Calgary and Red Deer under their Artistic Director Claude Lapalme.
Rosa Barocca’s recent album, featuring internationally-acclaimed cellist Elinor Frey, was nominated for a Juno Award in the category of Best Classical Album of the Year – Small Ensemble.