It’s hard enough to convince some people that a symphony performance—with its occasional pop concerts and sporadically familiar landmark pieces—isn’t a kind of artistic broccoli that you consume because it’s good for you. How do you combat the perception that compositions from even earlier times—medieval, renaissance and baroque music—have nothing to say to modern listeners?
A new ensemble has set it sights on giving vintage music its proper due. Utopia launches its inaugural season with two performances of “The Flawed Pearl: Music of the English and Italian Baroque,” featuring late 16th/early 17th-century works by Claudio Monteverdi, Nicholas Lanier and more. Building a group that will feature regular and guest musicians from both Utah and out of state, founders Emily Nelson and Christopher LeCluyse have committed Utopia to (according to a press release) “a playful, openminded approach to everything they perform.” Audiences are invited to share that open-mindedness.
Utopia Early Music @ St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 261 S. 900 East, Friday Sept. 11, 8 p.m. & St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral, 231 E. 100 South, Sunday, Sept. 13, 3 p.m. UtopiaEarlyMusic.org