January’s program of Rockport Music events represents the ever-broadening scope of music that the nonprofit organization brings to the waterfront Shalin Liu Performance Center. This month’s concerts feature everything from fiery flamenco dance and music to the return of a gospel ensemble. In between is HD opera and classical music.
Tony Beadle, the executive director of Rockport Music, said the new year will usher in music of all kinds, as well as some new features.
“We’re delighted to present a wide variety of music and other events,” he said, noting in particular something new in the spring when residents can be part of the audience during the national live broadcast NPR’s news quiz show “Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!”
The year kicks off Saturday, Jan. 5, at noon with the Metropolitan Opera HD broadcast of Berlioz’s “Les Troyens,” featuring Francesca Zambello’s 2003 production of the Trojan War epic. The cast includes Marcello Giordani in the lead role of Aeneas, the hero who fled Troy for the North African kingdom of Carthage. Deborah Voigt reprises the role of the cursed Trojan prophetess Cassandra and Susan Graham makes her debut as Dido, the noble but heartbroken Queen of Carthage.
The passionate sounds of flamenco take center stage Saturday, Jan. 12, at 8 p.m. featuring the Flamenco Dance Project, comprised of musicians and dancers from both sides of the Atlantic dedicated to the evolving art of this centuries-old tradition. The program features critically-acclaimed guitarist Juanito Pascual, flamenco singers Barbara Martinez and Seville native Alfonso Cid, and dancers Jose Moreno and Sabrina Avilés.
Classical music will be featured the following day, Sunday, Jan. 13, when award-winning pianist Wendy Chen performs at 3 p.m., with a pre-concert talk at 2 p.m. At 14, Chen debuted with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under conductor André Previn, and in 1990 became the youngest winner of the National Chopin Competition. Program highlights include Debussy’s “Clair de Lune,” Chopin’s “Nocturne, Op. 48, No. 1 in C minor,” Liszt’s “Mephisto Waltz No. 1,” and several works by Astor Piazzolla.