Every second year, Bay Area music lovers are treated to the Berkeley Festival & Exhibition, a celebration of music from the Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque periods that features local and international performers and attracts visitors from around the world. This year, BAMPFA partners with the Berkeley Festival to host concerts in BAMPFA’s Crane Forum on June 5 as well as a special series of films related to the Baroque music.
Our film series includes two distinctive interpretations of Handel’s theatrical music: His oratorio L’Allegro, il penseroso ed il moderato, brilliantly reimagined and choreographed by Mark Morris, and his opera Admeto, re di Tessaglia, transposed to a Japanese samurai and Butoh dance setting by Doris Dörrie. Also featured are three fictionalized accounts of the lives of composers Jean-Baptiste Lully, Marin Marais, and J. S. Bach. Each narrative treatment is radically different from the next—from the lavish excess of Gérard Corbiau’s Le roi danse to the detailed naturalism of Alain Corbeau’s Tous les matins du monde, to the perfect austerity of Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet’s The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach. This thematic series offers filmgoers and Baroque music aficionados alike a fine selection of cinema that exalts and reflects upon great composers and their works.
For a complete listing of concerts and events, visit the Berkeley Festival website, berkeleyfestival.org. The festival runs from June 5 to 12.
Susan Oxtoby, Senior Film Curator