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Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale announces programming for 2020/21 season, Richard Egarr’s first as Music Director

Highlights include a recreation of Beethoven’s epic 1808 concert; the world premiere of The No One’s Rose by MacArthur Fellow Matthew Aucoin; the Bay Area premiere of Georg Muffat’s Missa in labore requies in a side-by-side gala performance with Juilliard415; Philharmonia’s first-ever performances of Tchaikovsky; and much more

February 4, 2020

SAN FRANCISCO—Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale (PBO) announces its 2020/2021 season, which encapsulates the omnivorous musical tastes of incoming Music Director Richard Egarr. Richard has put together a season of programs that challenge performers and audiences alike, with many new-to-PBO works from the Baroque canon, new guest artists and new composers like Britten and Tchaikovsky, and a vital new commission. In Richard’s view, historical performance practice can be applied to all eras of music and believes that Baroque at its best can be woven seamlessly into a range of programs that seek to stimulate audiences of all kinds.

“The 2020/21 season marks the beginning of a new era at Philharmonia, with Richard’s ascension as Music Director fortuitously coinciding with our 40th season,” said Courtney Beck, PBO Executive Director. “Our musicians and audiences are already well acquainted with Richard from his past appearances as guest conductor of both our regular and alternative concert series, and we have long been fans of his warmth and sense of humor, not to mention his unabashed love for all kinds of music. As a faculty member at The Juilliard School, Richard is a natural educator and eager to share his deep knowledge with listeners of all backgrounds. Richard’s debut season features music from Purcell and Muffat, to Mozart, Beethoven and Tchaikovsky, to a brand-new work by Matthew Aucoin, and an astonishing array of guest stars, many appearing with PBO for the very first time. Everyone is eager to join this party with Richard, and we can’t wait to get started.”

The season opens in September with the ultimate Beethoven celebration: a four-hour, historically informed recreation of the legendary 1808 concert that featured premieres of some of Beethoven’s most iconic works, including the Fifth and Sixth Symphonies, the Fourth Piano Concerto, and the Choral Fantasy in C minor. This one-night-only event will be performed in the same fashion as Beethoven presented it over 200 years ago, with Richard conducting and starring as fortepiano soloist. The full forces of the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale will be joined by a lineup of star soloists: Mireille Asselin (soprano), Kelley O’Connor (alto), Nicholas Phan (tenor), and Cody Quattlebaum (bass-baritone).

The last several seasons have seen Philharmonia dramatically ramping up its commissioning of new works for period instruments under its New Music for Old Instruments initiative, including a song cycle and an oratorio by Pulitzer Prize-winner Caroline Shaw. This season is no exception, as Philharmonia brings to the Bay Area in October the world premiere of The No One’s Rose, an innovative production created by the American Modern Opera Company (AMOC) and co-commissioned by PBO and Stanford Live, with new music by 2018 MacArthur Fellow Matthew Aucoin. A powerful meditation on loss and recovery, The No One’s Rose combines music of Bach with the music of Aucoin, choreography by Bobbi Jene Smith, and poetry by Romanian Jew and Holocaust survivor Paul Celan. Directed by Zack Winokur, the project features today’s brightest vocal talents. Countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo and bass-baritone Davóne Tines return to PBO after a rapturous reception in Handel’s Aci, Galatea e Polifemo, while soprano Julia Bullock and tenor Paul Appleby make their long-awaited debuts. After its world premiere, The No One’s Rose goes on tour to the Krannert Center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and to the Metropolitan Museum of Art as part of the MetLiveArts series in New York City.

November sees Richard Egarr in his element with an all-English Baroque program featuring soprano soloist Rowan Pierce. Music by Christopher Gibbons, John Blow, and Matthew Locke culminates in joyous selections from Purcell’s The Fairy Queen. Richard conducts from the harpsichord for this program of music he knows like none other.

Following rousing acclaim from his performances at The Barbican in 2017, Richard brings his rendition of Handel’s Messiah to the Bay Area in December, in what is sure to become a staple of the holiday season. Richard’s intimate approach to Handel’s most famous oratorio reclaims the original “string band” instrumentation, leaving room for the Philharmonia Chorale under Bruce Lamott and the stellar lineup of vocal soloists to shine through. Countertenor Reginald Mobley returns to PBO after his turn as soloist on Handel’s Eternal Source of Light Divine in October 2019; soprano Stefanie True, tenor Andrew Tortise, and baritone Joshua Bloom make their PBO debuts.

In February, Richard shows his knack for unusual programming with a triple billing of Handel, Purcell, and Benjamin Britten, centered around the tenor voice. Handel and Britten each had their favorite tenors—John Beard and Peter Pears, respectively—and Richard brings their works to life with the help of tenor, James Gilchrist. For PBO’s debut performance of Britten, Gilchrist is joined by horn soloist Todd Williams.

Later in February, PBO celebrates its 40th season and Richard’s inaugural season with an epic Gala concert of Georg Muffat’s Missa in labore requies. Richard, who also serves on the faculty at The Juilliard School, leads the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale in a side-by-side performance with members of Juilliard415, the school’s elite historically-informed performance ensemble. This first-ever performance of Muffat’s mass in the Bay Area also features a quartet of British Baroque vocal specialists: soprano Mary Bevan, countertenor Tim Mead, tenor James Gilchrist, and baritone Roderick Williams. In two subsequent programs, the Muffat is paired with Haydn’s “Nelson Mass, ” also with Juilliard415. A third program will tour to Walt Disney Concert Hall.

Violinist Rachel Podger makes her long-awaited return to the Bay Area in March, extending beyond the Baroque with PBO for the first time in a program of Haydn and Mozart. Rachel herself leads PBO in Haydn’s Symphony No. 39 and Mozart’s Symphony No. 25, and demonstrates her own dazzling virtuosity in concertos by each composer, wielding her violin throughout as Mozart or Haydn themselves would have done in the first performances of these works.

Bringing the season to a close is PBO’s first foray into Russian romanticism, with Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme and Symphony No. 4 complementing Mozart’s Symphony No. 29. Brilliant cellist Nicolas Altstaedt makes his PBO debut as soloist for the Rococo Variations, while Richard Egarr leads the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra through a brand-new experience: Tchaikovsky on old instruments!

Supplementing its mainstage concert sets are two new installments of PBO’s popular SESSIONS series, 90-minute deconstructions of music, political history, and art. In September, composer Matthew Aucoin, PBO’s Jews in Music scholar Francesco Spagnolo, and stage director Zack Winokur lead a discussion on Jewish poet Paul Celan, whose work forms the backbone of The No One’s Rose, and visual artist Anselm Kiefer, who also drew inspiration from Celan. In November, Richard Egarr and Rowan Pierce illuminate the surprising connections between Henry Purcell, chocolate poisoning, dancing apes, and much more in a lively discussion about the English composer, interspersed with performances by Pierce.

In addition to the other touring appearances listed above, PBO will also make multiple additional appearances, nationally and internationally, throughout the 20/21 season. Richard’s first official performance as Music Director takes place in July 2020 in New York City, on the storied Naumburg Orchestral Concerts series; Richard, PBO, and vocal soloists Nola Richardson, James Reese, and Cody Quattlebaum reprise the program “The Well-Caffeinated Clavier” they first brought to life together in February 2020. For the new touring program, “Corelli the Godfather,” Richard conducts the music of Handel and two of Handel’s most admired composers, Corelli and Muffat; this program goes to Arte Musica in Québec, Queen’s University in Ontario, and Washington University in St. Louis.

Subscriptions to the new 2020/21 season are available to the public.
Call (415) 295-1900 to subscribe or visit



Egarr on Beethoven

A Monumental Four-Hour Recreation of the Legendary 1808 Concert!

Symphony No. 6 in F major, “Pastoral”
“Ah! perfido” for soprano and orchestra
“Gloria” from Mass in C major
Concerto for Fortepiano No. 4 in G major

Two-hour intermission

Symphony No. 5 in C minor
“Sanctus” from Mass in C minor
Fantasia in C minor, “Choral Fantasy”

Richard Egarr, conductor and fortepiano
Mireille Asselin, soprano
Kelley O’Connor, alto
Nicholas Phan, tenor
Cody Quattlebaum, bass-baritone
David Belkovski, fortepiano
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale
Bruce Lamott, chorale director

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 13 @ 4PM | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco



The No One’s Rose

World Premiere by Matthew Aucoin

The No One’s Rose
A World Premiere featuring music ranging from J.S. Bach to new music by Matthew Aucoin

American Modern Opera Company (AMOC)
Julia Bullock, soprano
Anthony Roth Costanzo, countertenor
Paul Appleby, tenor
Davóne Tines, bass-baritone
Bobbi Jene Smith, Or Schraiber, Julia Eichten, and Yiannis Logothetics, dancers
Keir Gogwilt, violin
Coleman Itzkoff, cello
Jonny Allen, percussion

Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra

Matthew Aucoin, conductor
Zack Winokur, director
Bobbi Jene Smith, chorepgrapher
John Torres, lighting designer
Carlos Soto, costume designer
Cath Brittan, producer

A co-production of Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale
American Modern Opera Company (AMOC)

Commissioned by Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale and
Stanford Live

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 7 @ 7:30PM | Bing Concert Hall, Stanford
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 9 @ 8:00PM | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 10 @ 8:00PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 11 @ 4:00PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley


Cloaked in the English Veil

Richard Egarr and Rowan Pierce

C. GIBBONS Fantasy
BLOW Songs
LOCKE Curtain tune from The Tempest
PURCELL Chaconne from King Arthur
PURCELL Selections from Fairy Queen

Richard Egarr, conductor and harpsichord
Rowan Pierce, soprano
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 4 @ 7:30PM | First United Methodist Church, Palo Alto
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 6 @ 8PM | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7 @ 8PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 8 @ 4PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley



Richard Brings Handel’s Holiday Masterpiece to Life

HANDEL Messiah

Richard Egarr, conductor
Stefanie True, soprano
Reginald Mobley, countertenor
Andrew Tortise, tenor
Joshua Bloom, baritone
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale
Bruce Lamott, chorale director

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 2 @ 7:30PM | First United Methodist Church, Palo Alto
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 4 @ 7PM | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 5 @ 7PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 6 @ 4PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley


Mr. Beard, Mr. Pears & Mr. Gilchrist

Handel, Purcell, and PBO’s Inaugural Britten

HANDEL Concerto Grossi, Op. 6
HANDEL Arias for John Beard
PURCELL Chacony in G minor (arr. Britten)
BRITTEN Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings, Op. 31

Richard Egarr, conductor
James Gilchrist, tenor
Todd Williams, horn
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 3 @ 7:30PM | First United Methodist Church, Palo Alto
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 5 @ 8PM | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 6 @ 8PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 7 @ 4PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley


Richard Egarr’s Debut Season Gala

with PBO and Juilliard415

Richard Egarr, conductor and organ
Mary Bevan and Margot Rood, soprano
Tim Mead and Daniel Moody, countertenor
James Gilchrist and James Reese, tenor
Roderick Williams, baritone
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale
Orchestra features members of Juilliard415
Bruce Lamott, chorale director


Cocktail Party & Formal Dinner
San Francisco City Hall

Richard’s Debut Season Gala Concert
Herbst Theater

After Party
San Francisco City Hall


Masses for Troubled Times

PBO and Juilliard415 Reunite for a Concert of Contemplation

MUFFAT Missa in labore requies
HAYDN Missa in Angustiis, “Nelson Mass”

Richard Egarr, conductor and organ
Mary Bevan, soprano
Tim Mead, countertenor
James Gilchrist, tenor
Roderick Williams, baritone
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale
Orchestra features members of Juilliard415
Bruce Lamott, chorale director

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 13 @ 7:30PM | Bing Concert Hall, Stanford
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 14 @ 4PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley


Classic Podger

Rachel Podger Returns for a Haydn/Mozart Feast

HAYDN Symphony No. 39 in G minor, Hob. I:39 “Tempesta di Mare”
MOZART Concerto for Violin No. 2 in D major, K. 211
HAYDN Concerto for Violin No. 1 in C major
MOZART Symphony No. 25 in G minor, K. 183

Rachel Podger, violin and leader
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 10 @ 7:30PM | Bing Concert Hall, Stanford
FRIDAY, MARCH 12 @ 8PM | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco
SATURDAY, MARCH 13 @ 8PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley
SUNDAY, MARCH 14 @ 4PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley


A Wolf in Bear’s Clothing

Featuring PBO Debuts of Tchaikovsky and Nicolas Altstaedt

MOZART Symphony No. 29 in A major, K. 201
TCHAIKOVSKY Variations on a Roccoco Theme, Op. 33
TCHAIKOVSKY Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36

Richard Egarr, conductor
Nicolas Altstaedt, violoncello
Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra

THURSDAY, APRIL 15 @ 8PM | Herbst Theatre, San Francisco
FRIDAY, APRIL 16 @ 7:30PM | Bing Concert Hall, Stanford
SATURDAY, APRIL 17 @ 8PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley
SUNDAY, APRIL 18 @ 4PM | First Congregational Church, Berkeley


The Poetry of Paul Celan

with Matthew Aucoin, Francesco Spagnolo & AMOC

TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29 @ 8PM | Jewish Community Center, San Francisco

Purcell, Monkeys & Chocolate

with Richard Egarr & Rowan Pierce

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 2 @ 8PM | ODC Theater, San Francisco


The Well-Caffeinated Clavier

with Nola Richardson, James Reese, and Cody Quattlebaum

TUESDAY, JULY 21 @ 7PM | Naumburg Orchestral Concerts, New York, NY

Corelli the Godfather

Handel, Corelli, Muffat

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19 @ 8PM | Arte Musica, Montreal, Québec
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 20 @ 2:30PM | Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario
SUNDAY, APRIL 11 @ 7PM | Washington University, St. Louis, MO

The No One’s Rose

with American Modern Opera Company (AMOC)

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 15 @ 7:30PM | Krannert Center, Champaign/Urbana, IL
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 17 @ 7PM | The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 18 @ 3PM | The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY

Masses for Troubled Times

with Mary Bevan and Roderick Williams

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 10 @ 8PM | Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles, CA

About Richard Egarr
Richard Egarr brings a joyful sense of adventure and a keen, inquiring mind to all his music-making—whether conducting, directing from the keyboard, giving recitals, playing chamber music, or indeed talking about music at every opportunity. After a successful career as Music Director of the Academy of Ancient Music for 14 years, where he succeeded founding director Christopher Hogwood, he joins Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale as Music Director. Richard also holds responsibilities as Principal Guest Conductor of Residentie Orkest The Hague and Artistic Partner at The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra in Minnesota, after having served as Associate Artist with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. As a conductor, Richard straddles the worlds of historically-informed and modern symphonic performance, making him an ideal fit for PBO’s parallel commitments to early and new music. Richard is already well-known to the musicians and patrons of PBO, having guest conducted the orchestra four times since 2012 in both regular season offerings and the PBO SESSIONS series. In addition to his conducting genius, he is a brilliant harpsichordist, and equally skilled on the organ and fortepiano.

Richard is a beloved teacher and has been on faculty of The Juilliard School for eight years in their Historical Performance division, has conducted major symphonic orchestras such as London Symphony Orchestra, Lincoln Center Festival Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, and The Philadelphia Orchestra, and regularly gives solo harpsichord recitals at the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, the Smithsonian, and elsewhere.

Born in Lincoln, England, Richard trained as a choirboy at York Minster, was organ scholar at Clare College Cambridge, and later studied with Gustav and Marie Leonhardt in Amsterdam, where he makes his home.

About Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale
Under the musical direction of Nicholas McGegan for the past 35 years, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale (PBO) is recognized as “America’s leading historically informed ensemble” (The New York Times). Using authentic instruments and stylistic conventions of the Baroque to late Romantic periods as well as commissioned new works, the orchestra engages audiences through its signature Bay Area series, national tours, recordings, commissions, and education projects of the highest caliber. Founded in the San Francisco Bay Area nearly 40 years ago, the ensemble is the largest of its kind in the United States.

PBO’s musicians are leaders in historical performance and serve on the faculties of The Juilliard School, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Harvard, and Stanford. PBO welcomes eminent guest artists including mezzo-sopranos Susan Graham and Anne Sofie von Otter, countertenors Anthony Roth Costanzo and Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen, and maestros Jonathan Cohen and Jeannette Sorrell. PBO enjoys strong relationships with preeminent artistic collaborators including Mark Morris Dance Group, The Juilliard School, and the American Modern Opera Company (AMOC). In collaboration with Cal Performances in 2017, PBO produced its first fully-staged opera, Rameau’s Le Temple de la Gloire, and since then have produced fully-staged productions of Handel’s Aci, Galatea e Polifemo with stage director Christopher Alden and Leclair’s Scylla et Glaucus with Centre de musique baroque de Versailles.

Among the most recorded orchestras in the world, PBO boasts a discography of nearly 50 recordings, including a coveted archival performance of mezzo-soprano Lorraine Hunt Lieberson in Berlioz’s Les Nuits D’été, and a GRAMMY®-nominated recording of Haydn symphonies. The orchestra released the world premiere recording of the original version of Rameau’s Le Temple de la Gloire with the unedited libretto by Voltaire in July 2018. In April 2020, PBO will release two groundbreaking recordings: a full collection of commissioned works by Pulitzer Prize winner Caroline Shaw, and a selection of arias sung by rising star contralto Avery Amereau.

Under the superb direction of Bruce Lamott, the award-winning Philharmonia Chorale is critically acclaimed for its brilliant sound, robust energy, and sensitive delivery of the text. Formed in 1995, the Chorale provides a vocal complement whose fluency in the stylistic language of the baroque period matched that of Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra. Founded by John Butt, a baroque keyboardist and one of the world’s leading Bach scholars, the Chorale has been led by Lamott since 1997.

Lamott also serves as Philharmonia’s Scholar-in-Residence. He first performed with the Orchestra in 1989 as continuo harpsichordist for Handel’s Giustino. Bruce plays a leading role in the organization’s many educational programs for youth and adults. In addition to his lively Pre- Concert Talks, Bruce writes PBO’s program notes and blogs, and gives lectures and demonstrations to groups throughout the Bay Area and beyond.

Stephanie Li
Marketing Associate