Joyeux Noël! A (Mostly) French Candlelight Christmas

SF Bach Christmas by Candlelight
Saturday, December 1, 2018
7:30 PM
Calvary Presbyterian Church
2515 Fillmore St (at Jackson)
San Francisco
Sunday, December 2, 2018
4:00 PM
Calvary Presbyterian Church
2515 Fillmore St (at Jackson)
San Francisco


The Whole Noyse Renaissance wind band
John Walko, organ
Peter Maund, percussion
Steven Bailey, keyboards

Kick off your holiday season with our beloved candlelight concert—this year with a French accent!

Revel in the sounds of festive Renaissance wind instruments, lively percussion, and Calvary’s mighty organ, while the choir surrounds you with candlelight and song in a magical experience that draws audiences back year after year.

Bring the whole family for an inspiring Christmas journey around the world and through the centuries, with music of Charpentier, Mouton, Berlioz, Dufay, Rogier, Poulenc, and more…including our second world premiere, by Bay Area composer Brian Holmes.

Join us on the carols, accompanied by handbells, drums, cornettos, sackbuts and shawms!

The Whole Noyse

The Whole Noyse has been one of the country’s leading early brass ensembles for over thirty years. Specializing in performing music of the Renaissance and early Baroque, The Whole Noyse focuses on the combination of cornetts, sackbuts, and curtal, instruments that made up the primary professional wind group of the 16th and 17th centuries. In keeping with the versatility expected of wind players of the period, the ensemble also doubles on recorders and flutes and often mixes in the sounds of shawm, slide trumpet, gittern, violin, and viola.

Concerts by The Whole Noyse in Europe and across North America have been enthusiastically received. The group has collaborated with some of North America’s most respected early music ensembles, including Magnificat, The King’s Noyse, The Newberry Consort, and Sex Chordae Consort of Viols, as well as a number of choirs, including the Vancouver Cantata Singers, Pro Coro Canada, San Francisco Choral Artists, and AVE. In 2010 the 400th anniversary of Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610, The Whole Noyse was invited to participate in more than fifteen performances of that monumental work in cities around the US and Canada, including San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Austin, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Vancouver, Calgary, and Honolulu. The group has performed alone in concert series of numerous early music societies and in other venues. Its solo recording, Lo Splendore d’Italia, is available on the Helicon label. The group can also be heard on recordings by Magnificat, the San Francisco Bach Choir, and the Vancouver Cantata Singers of major works of the seventeenth century; the Vancouver Cantata Singers’ CD Venetian Vespers of 1640 was nominated for a Juno Award and won the Outstanding Choral Award from the Association of Canadian Choral Conductors.

Percussionist Peter Maund

A native of San Francisco, Peter Maund studied percussion at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and music, folklore, and ethnomusicology at the University of California, Berkeley. A founding member of Ensemble Alcatraz and Alasdair Fraser’s Skyedance, he has performed with early and contemporary music ensembles including American Bach Soloists, Anonymous 4, Chanticleer, Hesperion XX, Kitka, Musica Pacifica, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, San Francisco Choral Artists, and Voices of Music, among others. He is the author of “Percussion” in A Performer’s Guide to Medieval Music, Indiana University Press, 2000. He has served on the faculty of the University of California, Berkeley as well as in workshops throughout the US and Europe. Described by the Glasgow Herald as “the most considerate and imaginative of percussionists” he can be heard on over 60 recordings.

composer Brian Holmes

As a composer, Brian Holmes usually writes for chorus or for solo voice. His works include three short operas, two musicals, a Requiem mass, two sequences of carols for chorus and orchestra, about eighty chorus pieces, twelve song cycles, and various of instrumental pieces. He has published thirty pieces, completed twenty-five commissions, and won a variety of prizes and awards, most notably the 2012 America Prize in Choral Composition for Amherst Requiem. He writes a new carol every year (sometimes two or three) to send as a musical greeting at Christmas time; consequently, he has written more Christmas music than anyone you are likely to meet this week. He has played horn professionally in the Boston Ballet, Opera San Jose, and the San Jose Symphony. He recently retired from the Physics Department of San Jose State, where he taught a course on the physics of music.

Organist John Walko

John Walko studied Theory and Composition at the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Juilliard School, and Huntingdon College; he studied piano with Annette Freeze, Andrius Kuprevicius, Tatyana Tsukanova, Liliane Quéstel, and Lili Kraus; and he studied organ and harpsichord with Dr. Harald Rohlig, Gene Jarvis, and John Balka.

Mr. Walko performed on location with the symphony orchestras of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Havana, Cuba for the five-hour silent film Napoleon, to audiences of 30,000 people. He worked with composer Carmine Coppola and director Francis Ford Coppola in the preparation of film scores, and accompanied the San Francisco Symphony Chorus in the Oscar-nominated film Godfather III.

Mr. Walko is Organist at Calvary Presbyterian Church and at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor; he accompanies the San Francisco City Chorus, Diablo Choral Artists, and Bella Musica. He has performed with Masterworks Chorale, Cantare Con Vivo, Baroque Choral Guild, San Francisco Boys Chorus, OAKE National Children’s Choir, and WomenSing, among others. He has performed many solo recitals in the US, Paris, Prague, and on the famed Riga Dom organ in Latvia. Mr. Walko leads organist tours throughout France, and was an adjudicator for the Bank District English/American Organ Festival Playing Competition in London.

Steven Bailey

Pianist Steven Bailey regularly performs in and outside the San Francisco Bay Area as soloist, chamber, and collaborative keyboardist. He is a full-time staff member of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he has taught since 1993. Mr. Bailey has appeared as concerto soloist with Symphony Parnassus, Diablo Symphony, UC Davis Symphony, San Francisco Concerto Orchestra, and Magnificat Baroque Orchestra. He regularly performs with American Bach Soloists as guest soloist and continuo organist and has collaborated in chamber performances with members of the Alexander, Arlekin, and Sausalito quartets. He has accompanied and performed with the San Francisco Bach Choir since 1992.

As a founding member of the vocal chamber music repertory group CMASH, Mr. Bailey often performs and premieres works by such noted composers as Jake Heggie, Vartan Aghababian, and Liam Wade. He is featured on CMASH founder (and SFCM alum) soprano Ann Moss’s debut CD “Currents” and her most recent CD “Love Life,” both recorded at Skywalker Sound and produced by Leslie Ann Jones.

Mr. Bailey holds a B.M. in Piano Performance from University of Wisconsin-Madison, and an M.M. in Piano Performance from Boston University, where he was a student of Anthony di Bonaventura.