The 14th Early Music Festival comes to Grounds For Sculpture

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Grounds For Sculpture will host The 14th Early Music Festival on March 24.

The 42-acre not-for-profit sculpture garden, museum and arboretum located in Hamilton will feature Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and Early American music sung and played by many of the region’s ensembles.

From 12:30 to 5:30 p.m., a dozen ensembles, both instrumental and vocal, will play and sing music from the 12th through the 18th century on two stages in the Seward Johnson Center for the Arts.

There will also be “Fringe Festival” events in other indoor areas of the Grounds and outdoors in the beautifully landscaped contemporary sculpture park, weather permitting. Local children’s ensembles will play in the early afternoon.

The theme for this year’s festival is “Metamorphosis,” reflecting the current exhibits in the museum’s galleries. Ensembles will express metamorphosis in music in diverse ways, reflecting three concurrent exhibitionscurrently on view: “Michael Rees: Synthetic Cells;” “James Carl: oof;” and “James Carl: woof.”

In Rees’ exhibition, which features a layer of augmented reality, not all is visible with the naked eye, and his colorful inflated cubes transform when viewed from the supplied in-gallery tablets. In Carl’s exhibitions, the artist is redefining commonplace materials of cardboard and venetian blinds into mathematically intricate sculpture.

Among the instruments to be featured are: harpsichord, lute, cittern, large and small violas da gamba, baroque strings, large and small recorders, flute, violin, cello and percussion.

The afternoon begins with an ensemble from the Youth Orchestra of Bucks County.  Our popular instrument “petting zoo” for all ages will occur twice during the day. During this very special experience, visitors are encouraged to interact with these unusual instruments.

Hosts of WWFM, The Classical Network, participate in the festival as Masters of Ceremonies.  Admission to the festival is free with park admission. To guarantee entry, purchase admission tickets online in advance at http://www.groundsforsculpture.org/Visit/Buy-Tickets.

The Guild for Early Music, Inc. is a public charitable consortium of music ensembles of central New Jersey and neighboring Pennsylvania. It seeks to foster appreciation of early music and to encourage professional and amateur musicians and ensembles. For more information about
the Guild for Early Music, including the performance schedule for March 18 visit www.guildforearlymusic.org.

WWFM The Classical Network is New Jersey’s only full-time classical music network, now celebrating its 37th year, and is listener-supported public radio with offices and studios located at Mercer County Community College. WWFM’s award winning programming spans the centuries, from Medieval and Renaissance music, through the Classical and Romantic eras to music of our time.  The Classical Network is heard on nine radio frequencies and worldwide through Internet streaming. Visit wwfm.org for more information. 

Grounds For Sculpture is a 42-acre not-for-profit sculpture park, arboretum, and museum founded by Seward Johnson. It combines art and beckoning spaces to surprise, inspire, and engage all visitors in the artist’s act of invention. Its collection features over 270 contemporary sculptures by renowned and emerging artists. Six indoor galleries offer rotating exhibitions. Rich educational programming and a robust schedule of performing arts provide added engagement. Hours, directions, and more at www.groundsforsculpture.org.