Message from the artistic director
Dear music lovers,
It is with great pleasure that I invite you to the 41st Lamèque International Baroque Music Festival. We are preparing a sensational edition, an edition "larger than life"!
This year the great Acadian winds inspire our first concert which will present the Baroque wind instruments in an event which promises to be a whirlwind. Dedicated to French Baroque music, our second concert will feature the winner of the Mathieu-Duguay Early Music Competition 2015. We will celebrate love, a feeling so intense it does not spare even the characters of mythology. Our last concert will break the limits: more than fifty artists will be on stage to perform the Mass in B minor by Bach, a monument of Baroque music. The Festival is proud to partner with Arion Baroque Orchestra, Vancouver Early Music Festival and the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival for the presentation of this project which will hit the road with a Canada-wide tour this summer.
In addition to these three concerts, several special events will allow you to discover the instruments, the works on the program, the musicians and their work. We invite you to go behind the scenes and to become active participants of the Festival.
I hope to see you this summer in Lamèque!
Artistic Director of the International Baroque Music Festival in Lamèque
The Lamèque International Baroque Music Festival is an annual festival dedicated to music from the period of 1600 to 1760, performed on period instruments. Founded in 1975 by harpsichordist Mathieu Duguay, the Festival has earned an enviable reputation on the New Brunswick and Canadian musical scenes, and even abroad. Each year, the Festival presents a series of high-calibre concerts at the end of July, making it a not-to-miss cultural event in Acadie. Most concerts are presented in churches and halls on the picturesque Lamèque Island, of which the colourful Saint-Cécile Church in Petite-Rivière-de-l’Île with exceptional acoustics.
Over the years, the Festival has proven to be one of the most interesting musical events of its kind in Canada, with concerts respecting the aesthetics of the Baroque era. Each season, the Festival presents outstanding performances on period instruments (or replicas). Its program includes vocal and instrumental selections, featuring choral works, chamber music and solo pieces by renowned musicians.
A Great Festival on a Small Island
From the seed of a single harpsichord recital in 1971, the Festival came into its own in 1975 and was incorporated in 1976. Since then, many memorable concerts have been presented in the intimate and charming settings on Lamèque Island and surrounding area.
Over the years, numerous world-renowned musicians have performed at the Festival: Musica Antica Köln, Il Tempo et Florilegium, the Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal, the Toronto Consort, excellent soloists such as Emma Kirby, Renata Pokupic, Agnès Mellon, Shannon Mercer, Karina Gauvin, and Nigel Rogers; pianofortists Steven Lubin and Andreas Steir; cellists Peter Wispelwey and Jaap ter Linden; violonist Rachel Podger, not to mention harpsichordists Geneviève Soly, Blandine Verlet, the late Scott Ross, Hank Knox, Blandine Rannou, Luc Beauséjour, and Rachelle Taylor.
Mission Saint-Charles Choir and Orchestra
The Festival's own choir and orchestra, La Mission Saint-Charles, was created in 1985 to celebrate the three hundredth anniversary of the birth of Johann Sebastian Bach. The size of La Mission Saint-Charles varies according to the needs of the music performed each year. The orchestra is comprised of professional musicians while the choir is a mix of professional and experienced amateur singers from the community. Each year, La Mission Saint-Charles presents masterworks of the Baroque repertoire for orchestra, choir and soloists, making each performance a long-awaited musical moment for concert-goers. Since its inception, La Mission Saint-Charles has been led by Hervé Niquet (France), Andrew Parrott (United Kingdom), Christoph Spering (Germany), Bernard Labadie (Canada), Rinaldo Alessandrini (Italy), and Jaap ter Linden (Netherlands), to name but a few. Furthermore, the Festival has been a stepping stone for many Acadian artists, such as sopranos Suzie Leblanc, Pascale Beaudin, and Nathalie Paulin. Since 1977, CBC Radio has been supporting the event, contributing even further to the Festival’s renown in Canada.
Season after season, a selection of prestigious artists and a dedicated effort to maintaining high standards for its musical programming have made the Festival a prestigious event that welcomes patrons from well beyond the borders of New Brunswick. Most concerts take place in Sainte-Cécile Church which is an attraction in and of itself. Built in 1913, it was repainted in 1968 by the parish priest in a multi-coloured motif. Its wooden structure offers perfect acoustics for the music, and with its coloured interior, it makes a dramatic impression on audiences.
Board of directors
Jean-René Noël, chairman – Campbellton
Marcel Lanteigne, vice-chairman – Lamèque
Denis Ferron, secretary-treasurer – Village-des-Poirier
Marie-Anne Ferron, administrator – Lamèque
Paulette Sonier-Rioux, administrator – Pointe-Brûlée
Emmanuelle Tremblay, administrator - Petite-Rivière-de-l'Île
Johannes Larsen, administrator – Miramichi
Brigitte Lavoie, administrator – Moncton
Daniel Chiasson, administrator – Moncton
Team of the Festival
Vincent Lauzer, artistic director
Roseline Hébert, administrative director