Les Délices’ new program The Leading Man features the unique voice and dynamic stage-presence of tenor Jason McStoots, who performs feats of musical heroism, absurdist comedy, and ravishing beauty in this program of operatic excerpts by Lully, Boismortier, Leclair, and Rameau. Les Délices performs at William Busta Gallery on Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 8:00pm, and in Herr Chapel at Plymouth Church (2860 Coventry Rd., Shaker Heights) on Sunday, May 4, 2014 at 4:00pm (a pre-concert lecture by Dr. Georgia Cowart begins at 3pm).
The Leading Man is inspired one of the 18th century’s most famous tenors, Pierre Jélyotte. Jélyotte was the Paris Opéra’s leading man and comic muse from the mid-1730s through the 1750s, performing lead roles in virtually of Rameau’s operas among many others. Known for his kind and humble nature, Jélyotte easily took to roles that cast him as a hero, a fair and just king, or a faithful lover. Yet he also excelled in comedy: cross-dressing for the role of deluded frog-princess in Rameau’s Platée.
Les Délices will celebrate five successful seasons presenting “musically sophisticated,” “elegant,” and “innovative” programs with a Benefit Concert on Saturday April 12, 2014 at 3pm inside the galleries of Tregoning & Company (1300 W. 78th St, Cleveland). The concert features director and baroque oboist Debra Nagy alongside violinists Scott Metcalfe & Julie Andrijeski, and harpsichordist Michael Sponseller, and highlights music from each of the group’s past five seasons with works by Corrette, Rameau, Couperin, Leclair, and Lully. Tickets for the benefit are $75 each ($50 tax-deductible), available at www.lesdelices.org
Les Délices (in French, The Delights) fosters, educates, and expands audiences for live chamber music on period instruments through dedication to underperformed repertoires (with a specialty in the French baroque) on its home stage in Cleveland, on tour, and through recordings and broadcasts. Les Délices creates unique, alternative concert experiences that reach across artistic disciplines, and the group’s gallery concerts aim to forge partnerships with organizations and businesses to bring arts patrons back into city neighborhoods.
In the past five years, Les Délices’ audiences have heard a lot of music they never heard before. Through unique programs like Woman Scorned, Pocket Opera, and Age of Indulgence, Les Délices has performed over fifteen Ohio premieres, brought international-caliber artists to Cleveland, released two criticallyacclaimed CDs, and performed for enthusiastic audiences across the country.
Les Délices is a small ensemble that makes a big impact with entertaining, thought-provoking programs presented in unique and intimate settings that enhance the listening experience. Les Délices’ informal gallery concerts celebrate Cleveland’s flourishing arts community and simulate a salon atmosphere similar to the one in which this music was first heard and enjoyed. Saturday evening concerts are followed by a wine and cheese reception and conversation with the artists. Sunday afternoon concerts are preceded by pre-concert lectures starting at 3pm, and are presented in the gorgeous acoustics of Plymouth Church’s Herr Chapel in Shaker Heights, where Les Délices is Artist in Residence.
On May 3 & 4, 2014, Les Délices closes their 5th Anniversary season with the Cleveland debut of rising-star tenor Jason McStoots in The Leading Man–a program inspired by the Paris Opéra’s leading man and comic muse Pierre Jélyotte.
An unexpected illness among the players of Baroque ensemble Les Délices resulted in a lastminute change of program over the weekend, from an offering of mid-18th-century French quartets to a serving of early-18th-century trios and sonatas. Had Baroque oboist and leader Debra Nagy not mentioned this in her informal remarks from the stage, the audience might have been none the wiser, so accomplished were the performances.