Hear Bach and Mozart, as they were meant to be, during the Aston Magna Festival

Concerts will take place June 17 and 24 in Slosberg Music Center

Aston MagnaWALTHAM, Mass.— On June 17 and 24, the Aston Magna Festival at Brandeis University will present works by two giants of classical music, Johann Sebastian Bach and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, using only period instruments- offering audiences a rare opportunity to hear the pieces as the composers meant them to sound.

The festival, now 37 years old, is a pioneering series of early music concerts that attempts to recreate the sounds and atmosphere of early classical music. While the musicians typically perform at the festival’s home in Great Barrington, Mass. or at Bard College in New York’s Hudson Valley, Boston-area residents will now have the chance to experience the series during the pair of Thursday night concerts at Slosberg Music Center on the Brandeis campus.

“The intimate size of the venues, and the expertise of Aston Magna's musicians make this a unique summer festival,” says Aston Magna Artistic Director Dan Stepner, who also serves as a member of both the Brandeis music faculty and Lydian String Quartet. “In addition to using period instruments and vocal styles, Aston Magna concerts, through the music, pre-concert lectures and program notes, illuminate the cultural and historical context of the music featured.”

Dan Stepner
     Dan Stepner
The Aston Magna Festival features musicians Stephen Hammer, classical oboe; Eric Hoeprich, basset clarinet; Daniel Stepner and Nancy Wilson, classical violins; David Miller, and Laura Jeppesen, classical violas; and Loretta O’Sullivan and Guy Fishman, classical cellos.

Before each performance, Daniel Stepner will deliver a pre-concert talk about the instruments and music being played.

Don’t miss what The Boston Globe calls “America’s preeminent summer early-music event…a festival that is out on the cutting edge of its art.”

Tickets for each performance are $20 for the general public, $15 for Brandeis faculty and staff and non-Brandeis students, and $10 for Brandeis students. To purchase, call Brandeis Tickets at 781-736-3400 or order online.

Thursday, June 17
Aston Magna Festival: Virtuoso Violin

Slosberg Music Center

8 p.m. (7 p.m. pre-performance talk)
For this special Brandeis performance, Aston Magna musicians will perform Bach's Three Partitas for Solo Violin: Partita III in E Major, Partita I in b minor, Partita II in d minor (including the Chaconne).

Thursday, June 24
Aston Magna Festival: Completely Mozart

Slosberg Music Center

8 p.m. (7 p.m. pre-performance talk)
The second performance of the Aston Magna Festival at Brandeis celebrates Mozart's work for oboe and clarinet, performed on period instruments: Quartet for oboe and strings, K. 370; Sextet for strings (18th-century arrangement of the Sinfonia Concertante), K. 364; Movement for basset clarinet and string quartet (recently completed by Robert Levin); and Quintet for basset clarinet and string quartet, K. 581.

Return to the BrandeisNOW homepage