Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A Night at the Opera in Rye

Suzanne Clary '83 is (bottom, right) is president of the Jay Heritage Center in Rye, which will host a "Night at the Opera" Feb. 23.  Grant Herreid, a director of Yale's Baroque Opera Project, (top, right) will perform with other musicians works from the 18th century. (JHC photos, C. Gutierrez photo)

The John Jay Heritage Center, the national landmark with tall, stately white columns on the main thoroughfare in Rye, will host a "Night at the Opera," Sunday, Feb. 23 (3 pm), featuring music from the 18th Century. Grant Herreid, artistic director of the Baroque Opera Project at Yale, will lead a group of musicians who will perform works from American, French and English compositions of that period.

Herreid, a tenor, will also play the lute and viol.  Other musicians include Catherine Leech (soprano), Paul Shipper, a bass (flute and guitar), Leah Gale Nelson (violin), and Daniel Swenberg (lute). Swenberg also plays the theorbo, a string instrument developed in the 16th century.

Herreid has taught classes in Renaissance music and 17th-century song and directed several opera productions and theatrical early-music shows. At Yale, he is also co-director of the Yale Collegium Musicum, an instrumental ensemble in the Music School. 

Herreid has performed around the world, playing the lute, the theorbo, and other early reeds, brass and strings. Before he pursued Renaissance and early music, he started out as a trumpeter playing jazz and classical music.

For the concert, the Jay Center will transform its Carriage House into a concert hall, as part of a music series that celebrates the music of the era of John Jay (1745-1829), the American diplomat, Founding Father, Chief Justice, and New York Governor. Jay spent his childhood in Rye. His son William graduated from Yale. 

The Carriage House at the Center has also been the host site of a YWAA-sponsored musicale.

Suzanne Clary '83 is president of the Board of Trustees of the Jay Heritage Center. Besides the series of concerts, plays and art exhibits, the Center hosts programs in American history, architecture, social justice, landscape conservation and the environment.

Under Clary's direction, the Center installed an energy-efficient geothermal system, becoming the oldest National Historic Landmark structure in New York State to do so.  The Center has been widely praised for its concerns for the environment and for sustainable practices.

At Yale, Clary majored in history of art. For her work at Jay, she received the Historic Preservation Award in 2010 from the Garden Club of America.

Yale Law School professor Akhil Reed Amar spoke to guests at the Jay Center last fall on "On the Nature of Constitutions," lecturing with particular attention on the U.S. Constitution.

To purchase tickets for the Feb. 23 concert, click JAY-MUSIC. For more about the Center, click JAY-CENTER.


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