Press Release: Ensemble Caprice


P. O. Box 271193

Houston, TX 77277-1193

Media contact:

Susan Love Fitts, 936-597-8825

Houston Early Music presents Baroque innovators, Ensemble Caprice

Music of Paradise and Hell, March 5, 2010

HOUSTON, TX— January 12, 2010 – Houston Early Music presents Ensemble Caprice in Music of Paradise and Hell on March 5th at 8pm at Christ the King Lutheran Church, featuring a dazzling selection of 17th century works on recorders, viola da gamba, Baroque guitar and percussion. The performance coincides with the Society of Seventeenth-Century Music annual conference at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music.

“The co-artistic directors, Matthias Maute and Sophie Larivièreare, are simply phenomenal players, among the best in the world,” says Nancy Ellis, Houston Early Music artistic director. “Their virtuosity, along with that of the other ensemble musicians, has earned Caprice a much-deserved reputation as one of the top early music groups on the international scene.” The ensemble also includes such outstanding musicians as Susie Napper on viola da gamba, David Jacques on Baroque guitar, and percussionist Ziya Tabassian.

Originally founded in Germany, the now Montreal-based Ensemble Caprice aims for innovation as they head into their 20th anniversary season. “We try to find Baroque music that does not sound Baroque,” says Maute, who plays the recorder and Baroque flute, and composes. “There is so much music in the 17th and 18th century that is off the beaten tracks, that it gives us great pleasure to throw these unusual styles – like Baroque gypsy music – into our program.”

Music of Paradise and Hell features music by such 17th century legends as Andrea Falconieri, Francesco Turini, Marco Uccellini, Francesco Corbetta and Johann Heinrich Schmelzer. “We are all somewhere in between heaven and hell, and we like to present programs that relate to us as contemporaries,” says Maute. “Needless to say, the composers of the 17th century had a lot to say on this subject.” Contrasts abound as well in considering the pairing of Andrea Falconieri and Johann Heinrich Schmelzer. “They never worked together, but when you witness the meeting of their music, it is as if John Lennon and Paul McCartney started joint song writing again,” says Maute. “It is ‘reality music,’ full of joy, conflict, dissonances, arguments, entertainment and sadness.”

Caprice’s most recent CD, Gloria! Vivaldi’s Angels, (Analekta) has won Canada’s prestigious 2009 JUNO award in the category of Classical Album of the Year: Vocal or Choral Performance. “It’s been an honor to win the JUNO,” says Maute. “We can definitely book the year 2009 as our most successful year.”

Matthias Maute will give a pre-concert talk at 7:15 p.m.


Christ the King Lutheran Church, 2353 Rice Blvd., Houston, TX 77005

Limited free parking is available on the lot west of Christ the King Lutheran Church. Ample parking is available for $1.00 (credit card only) across the street at Rice University’s stadium parking lot on the southeast corner of Rice & Greenbriar.


Tickets are available online at and at the door: $35 for general admission, $30 for seniors, and $10 for students (with student ID.) Free admission for children under 15.

For season subscription information and to learn more about Houston Early Music, visit, e-mail or call 713-432-1744.


What: Houston Early Music Presents Ensemble Caprice in Music of Paradise and Hell

When: Friday, March 5th, 2010, at 8 pm

Where: Christ the King Lutheran Church, 2353 Rice Blvd, Houston, TX 77005

Tickets: 713-432-1744 or


One of the nation’s oldest early music organizations, and as the city’s only presenting organization dedicated to covering the large historical span of early music in all of its forms, Houston Early Music epitomizes a movement that has swept the world of classical music. Officially incorporated in 1969, the nonprofit provides performance opportunities for up-and-coming and major early music artists from around the world in an annual concert series. A successful and growing educational outreach program introduces a future generation to a broad range of music. Houston Early Music is funded in part by grants from the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance and by Texas Commission on the Arts and The National Endowment for the Arts.



Houston Early Music presents the Ensemble Caprice in Music of Paradise and Hell on Friday, March 5, 2010, at 8:00 pm, at Christ the King Lutheran Church, 2353 Rice Blvd in Houston. For more information, call 713-432-1744 or visit

Photo credit: Tobias Haynes

Media contact:

Susan Love Fitts, 936-597-8825