Ensemble Bizarria, Doing Baroque Different(ly)
Before it was baroque, it was bizarria, or bizzarria, or bizzarie, or bizzarrerie, or any other way one might spell it before the dictionary was invented. While the term "baroque" is defined as a "misshapen pearl," today's modern audiences tend to think more of lightly powdered wigs and carefully shaped topiaries of Versailles than the raw bloody drama of Artemisia Gentileschi's Judith. Ensemble Bizarria is committed to reclaiming a little of that wild past, and connecting it to our equally wild present.
Before music was "Early" it was just music, and through working with living composers today, Ensemble Bizarria is indeed engaging in the performance practices of the past: forging relationships with living composers to enrich and explore the sound world of the instruments of another time. It's about creating the music of our present, nothing ‘early’ about it
Ensemble Bizarria is made up of some of the best west-coast young artists in the field of early music. Members have performed with internationally renowned ensembles such as Tafelmusik, American Bach Soloists, Musica Angelica, Bach Collegium San Diego, Opera Atelier, and Seattle Baroque Orchestra. Our performers are as diverse as the music they love: scholar-performers with one foot in academia - teaching at universities such as UCLA and USC - and the other on the concert stage, working with leading artists such as Stephen Stubbs, Jeanne Lamon, William Christie, and performing onstage with Kanye West and Rise Against. Playing an array of instruments from the more well-known harpsichord, baroque violin and 'cello to the lesser known crumhorn, dulcian and sackbut, Ensemble Bizarria seeks to redefine the sound of both "early" and "new" music in Southern California.
Since our founding in 2016, we have presented concerts across the country. Nationally, we have performed at the Twin Cities Early Music Festival, the Fringe Series of both Boston and Berkeley Early Music Festivals, University of Oregon, and Michigan State University. We've also been selected twice for the San Francisco Early Music Society's "Early Music Sundays" Series and as recommended artists in the Beverley Hills National Auditions. Back in our home base of California, we perform up and down the Golden State: from Northern California chamber music tours to appearances at Los Angeles' LAB: FEST, UCLA's Powell Library, University of San Diego and California State Unversity-Fullerton.