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“Context, Competition, and High Notes: Handel’s Alcina” | Ellen Harris, Professor Emeritus at MIT in Music and Theater Arts | Boston Early Music Festival
Tuesday • November 9, 2021 | 12:00 pm
“Context, Competition, and High Notes: Handel’s Alcina”
Description: Handel wrote Alcina at a very difficult period in his life when he faced the stiffest competition of his career. He used his choice of libretto and the voice of his most dedicated prima donna to vanquish the field.
ELLEN T. HARRIS is Professor Emeritus at MIT in Music and Theater Arts. Her research has focused largely on the music of Handel. Her books include the award-winning George Frideric Handel: A Life with Friends (Norton, 2014) and Handel as Orpheus: Voice and Desire in the Chamber Cantatas (Harvard, 2001). The 30th anniversary, revised edition of her Henry Purcell: Dido and Aeneas appeared in 2017. Harris was elected a Fellow of the American Philosophical Society (2016), American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1998), and made an Honorary Member of the American Musicological Society (2011). For the 2013–2014 academic year she was a Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar, and in 2016, 2018, and 2020, a Visiting Professor at The Juilliard School. In 2015–2016, she was President of the American Musicological Society. Harris has performed twice with John Williams and the Boston Pops and sung the National Anthem at Fenway Park.