The soirée will celebrate the upcoming, annual Bloomington Early Music Festival, which will be held from May 22-27. This year’s festival theme is “Celebrating Women in Early Music.” Tickets for the soirée are available for $35.
Bloomington Early Music promotes early music performance, including music from the medieval period through the early 19th century, across regions and cultural traditions. In addition to leading local workshops, Bloomington Early Music works to sustain and grow their annual festival.
Colin Knapp, Bloomington Early Music’s manager of marketing, publicity and development, said the festival’s musical performances and workshops will be announced during the soirée. Programming will include 15 concerts by musicians from across the United States and Europe, as well as six workshops for children and adults, both virtual and in-person. All festival events are free to the public and within walking distance of Bloomington’s courthouse.
The soirée will feature performances by musical ensembles, a toast to the festival, desserts from One World Catering and a silent auction to raise money for the festival, Knapp said. Auction items include framed artwork, a meal prepared by a One World Catering chef and a weekend getaway in Brown County.
Tonos del Sur, a historically-informed ensemble led by baroque violinist Sarah Cranor, will perform at the soirée. The Bloomington Bach Cantata Project, a local group of student and professional musicians who perform cantatas in the style of composer Johann Sebastian Bach will also perform.
The festival theme, “Celebrating Women in Early Music,” came with an exciting transition, Knapp said. This year marks the arrival of Bloomington Early Music’s first female board president, Suzanne Ryan Melamed, former editor-in-chief of humanities and executive editor of music at Oxford University.
Knapp said he’s looking forward to the live musical performances and spending time in the venue during the soirée.
“The FAR Center for Contemporary Arts is a gem here in Bloomington,” Knapp said. “It's absolutely stunning, so just to be able to spend time in that space with other early music lovers for a few hours, it's going to be quite lovely.”