A special bonus on the Winter Baroque concert

Sarah Darling

Sarah Darling, the beloved Boston virtuoso baroque violinist, wrote to me last week and asked whether she could play a small solo work on the upcoming NCMF Winter Baroque concert (TICKETS) this Sunday, December 18th, at 3:00. She proposed Thomas Baltzar’s (1630 - 1663) jewel of a piece, his Prelude, which packs more in two minutes than some composers stuff into an entire symphony.


Baltzar was a violinist who emigrated from Germany to England in 1655 where he amazed people with his technical facility and ability to play “on that single instrument a full consort.” Another observed “I saw him run his fingers to the end of the of the violin, and run them back insensibly, and all with alacrity and in very good tune, which I nor any in England saw the like before.” Tragically, like many hyper-creative humans, his flaws were as extreme as his talents and he drank himself to death.

Westminster Abbey, London

He is interred in Westminster Abbey, a significant recognition of the esteem in which he was held. Nonetheless, his name appears as “Mr. Thomas Balsart, one of the violins in the king's service.”

Come hear Sarah this weekend. I hope to see you there!

David Yang, Artistic Director

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