Celebrate the Holidays with Music

Rockport Music welcomes Mark O’Connor, Dover Quartet, Delta Rae, and much more.

Mark O'Connor

Photo by Christopher McAllen


Celebrate the holidays this season with music! Rockport Music offers numerous options, including the Cape Ann Big Band Holiday concert on Saturday, December 3, at 3 and 8 pm. Cape Ann’s own 17-piece big band performs holiday favorites, old and new, infused with a bit of jazz, swing, and rock n’ roll. In just a short span of time, the Cape Ann Big Band has become one of the most sought after ensembles in the North Shore. Tickets: $19-$34 rockportmusic.org.


On Sunday, December 4 at 7 pm, the O’Connor Band featuring Mark O’Connor presents An Appalachian Christmas. The Grammy award-winning fiddler and composer, known for his unique bluegrass-jazz-classical hybrid sound, brings his virtuosic family to Rockport for a yuletide-themed Appalachian Christmas concert, just in time for the holidays. Mark O'Connor is an astonishingly versatile American violinist and composer who has had exceptional success melding various genres of music -- country and bluegrass, jazz, and classical -- into his own unique style and voice. This has resulted in two Grammy awards; dozens of his own albums; collaborations with a diversity of other musicians, such as Yo-Yo Ma, Edgar Meyer, Renée Fleming, and James Taylor, among many others. His first album on Sony Classical, Appalachia Waltz (1996), with cellist Yo-Yo Ma and bassist Edgar Meyer, impressed classical critics with its originality and attractiveness and became a huge crossover hit. The trio's next album, Appalachian Journey (2000), won O'Connor his second Grammy award. His Fiddle Concerto, composed in 1993, has been performed around the world hundreds of times. By 2010, he had written another six concertos and the Americana Symphony, recorded by Marin Alsop and the Baltimore Symphony.

The O'Connor Band performs an engaging, dynamic show featuring compelling arrangements of Americana rich with virtuosic solos, and tight vocal harmonies. Introducing Mark's family members; Maggie O'Connor - fiddle, Forrest O'Connor - mandolin and vocals and Kate Lee - fiddle and vocals. Rounding out the band is National Flatpick Guitar Champion Joe Smart and double bassist/old-time banjoist Geoff Saunders. Tickets: $38-$52


On Friday, December 9, at 8 pm, the Dover Quartet will perform at the Shalin Liu Performance Center. The Dover Quartet catapulted to international stardom following a stunning sweep of the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition, becoming one of the most in-demand ensembles in the world. The New Yorker recently dubbed them “the young American string quartet of the moment,” and The Strad raved that the Quartet is “already pulling away from their peers with their exceptional interpretive maturity, tonal refinement and taut ensemble.” In 2013, the Quartet became the first ever Quartet-in-Residence for the venerated Curtis Institute of Music. Each season, the Dover Quartet performs more than 100 concerts throughout the United States, Canada, South America, and Europe, as well as collaborating in concerts with numerous artists. The Dover won not only the Grand Prize but all three Special Prizes at the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition, as well as winning top prizes at the Fischoff Competition and the Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition. They have participated in multiple festivals, including La Jolla SummerFest, Bravo! Vail, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, and in 2013-14, the Quartet acted as the Ernst Stiefel String Quartet-in-Residence at the Caramoor Festival. The Dover Quartet draws from the musical lineage of the Cleveland, Vermeer, and Guarneri Quartets, having studied at the Curtis Institute and Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, where they were in residence from 2011-2013. The Quartet is dedicated to sharing their music with underserved communities and is an active member of Music for Food, an initiative to help musicians fight hunger in their home communities. While in

Rockport, the Quartet is presenting several programs to local school students as part of Rockport Music’s Education and Outreach program. A Pre-Concert talk with Dr. Andrew Shryock is free to all ticketholders at 7 pm.

PROGRAM MOZART: Quartet in B-flat major, K. 589 BRITTEN: Quartet No. 2 in C major, Op. 36 BEETHOVEN: Quartet in C major, Op. 59, No. 3

Tickets: $29-$39


On Saturday, December 10, at 8 pm, Delta Rae will make their Rockport debut with a yuletide-themed concert in perfect time for the holiday season. A much-buzzed about North Carolina folk-rock group that deftly balances Americana with soul and anthemic pop, Delta Rae is a six piece rock band from Durham, NC, whose sophomore album After It All came out in 2015. Since the release of their debut album Carry The Fire in the summer of 2012 and the group’s follow-up EP “Chasing Twisters,” Delta Rae has been profiled everywhere from NPR and Time to Forbes. Rolling Stone magazine proclaimed that “if Fleetwood Mac came up in North Carolina, they might resemble Delta Rae.” VH1 hand selected them for their “You Oughta Know” Artist of the Month program, and they performed twice on both The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Conan. Live is where Delta Rae truly flourish, having spent the last year-and-a-half playing to sold out venues from coast to coast, even sharing the stage with First Lady Michelle Obama when they performed during a Democratic rally at UNC Chapel Hill. They’ve played pretty much every festival under the sun, including Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, Austin City Limits and Voodoo, and are excited to be hitting the road again. The Opening Act is Penny & Sparrow. Tickets: $29-$39


On Sunday, December 11, at 3 pm, the Back Bay Ringers will perform a holiday program at the Shalin Liu Performance Center. Back Bay Ringers (BBR) is an advanced, auditioned community handbell ensemble that has quickly developed a reputation for excellence, regularly performing at such Boston-area landmarks as Faneuil Hall, Symphony Hall, the Boston Children’s Museum, and the Prudential Center. Back Bay Ringers has also performed in festivities associated with the 2004 Democratic National Convention as well as the Boston Marathon, as well as ceremonies associated with the tenth anniversary of 9/11. BBR has recorded three CDs. BBR’s first recording, Merry and Bright: A Celebration of Carols with the Back Bay Ringers, was released in 2007. BBR recorded Perpetual Motion in the summer of 2010. The ensemble’s latest recording, Comfort and Joy, was released in December 2013. Under the leadership of artistic director Griff Gall, BBR has grown into one of the country’s most innovative handbell organizations. In its short history, BBR has founded the Boston Handbell Festival, a yearly celebration bringing together the region’s best community and church handbell ensembles, with the proceeds donated toward the purchase of handchimes for a Boston-area public school. Tickets: $15-$20


On Monday, December 12 at 4 and 8 pm, Brian O’Donovan’s A Christmas Celtic Sojourn returns to the Shalin Liu Performance Center for its annual holiday program. O’Donovan’s A Celtic Sojourn has thrilled radio audiences for twenty-eight years. For the last fourteen, the Christmas-time live version of the show has drawn on Celtic, Pagan, and Christian traditions to celebrate the music of the season. First launched in 2003, A Christmas Celtic Sojourn reflects the compelling and diverse offerings of the weekly national radio program. For the past three years, in celebration of the second decade of the concert series, one of the shows at the beautiful Cutler Majestic Theatre in downtown Boston has been radio broadcast nationally. This year will see a new Public Radio International-distributed special featuring the 2015 program. With legends of music, song, and dance from the Celtic world and beyond poised to take the stage together, this year’s show again promises to build its reputation as one of the chestnuts of live holiday music in the region. Music director Seamus Egan returns with members of his legendary group Solas and the program is artistically directed again by Paula Plum for the fourteenth straight year, this promises to be one of the most exciting A Christmas Celtic Sojourn presentations yet. Tickets: $49-$69


On Saturday, December 17 at 7 pm, get in the holiday spirit with Rockport Music’s annual Holiday Community Sing-along. This year’s event will feature the Danny Fratina Brass Ensemble, as well as holiday songs by Rockport High School’s Madrigal Singers. Free, no tickets required.





On Sunday, November 27, 2 pm, Rockport Music announces the addition of an encore showing of the Manhattan Short Film Festival. The voting has already occurred and winners announced, but now you have an opportunity to see them again or for the first time. The 10 MANHATTAN SHORT finalists hail from eight countries, with France and Australia represented by two films each. These Final 10 short films represent the best among a record 844 submissions from 52 countries received by Manhattan Short for 2016, testimony to the enduring vibrancy and creativity of the short film genre. In addition, for the first time, all of the Final 10 short films are Oscar-qualified, meaning they are automatically eligible for an Academy Award nomination. Tickets: $8


On Saturday, December 10, 12:55 pm, the Metropolitan Opera Live in HD presents one of the most highly praised operas of recent years, Kaija Saariaho’s yearning medieval romance L’Amour de Loin (“Love From Afar”). The production is by Robert Lepage, co-produced with L’Opéra de Québec, where it premiered to acclaim last summer, in collaboration with Ex Machina. Debuting Finnish conductor Susanna Mälkki leads the performance, which stars Susanna Phillips as Clémence, Eric Owens as Jaufré, and Tamara Mumford as the Pilgrim who carries messages of love between them. Tickets: $32, $29, $20. Met Lunches are held on the third floor and are available for purchase ($17/$12) at 12 pm.


On Thursday, December 15 at 7 pm, Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart return to the West End stage in Harold Pinter’s No Man's Land, broadcast live to the Shalin Liu Performance Center from Wyndham’s Theatre, London. One summer's evening, two aging writers, Hirst and Spooner, meet in a Hampstead pub and continue their drinking into the night at Hirst's stately house nearby. As the pair become increasingly inebriated, and their stories increasingly unbelievable, the lively conversation soon turns into a revealing power game, further complicated by the return home of two sinister younger men. Also starring Owen Teale and Damien Molony, don’t miss this glorious revival of Pinter’s comic classic. The broadcast will be followed by an exclusive Q&A with the cast and director Sean Mathias. Rating: Ages 15 and up, Rated R. Tickets: $15-$22 Adults


On Sunday, December 18, at 2 pm, see and hear the groundbreaking broadcast that launched the Met Opera’s award-winning Live in HD series to movie theaters in 2006, The Magic Flute enchanted opera lovers from around the world with the whimsical humor and breathtaking puppetry of Julie Taymor’s hit production, presented in a shortened English-language version. Under the baton of Maestro James Levine, a winning ensemble cast – including Nathan Gunn, Ying Huang, Matthew Polenzani, Erika Miklosa, and René Pape – brings fresh life to Mozart's timeless fairy tale. Tickets: $15-$25


On Tuesday, December 27 at 7 pm, enjoy an encore showing of National Theatre’s Frankenstein directed by Academy Award®-winner Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, Slumdog Millionaire) and featuring Jonny Lee Miller (CBS’s Elementary, Trainspotting) and Benedict Cumberbatch (BBC’s Sherlock, The Imitation Game) as Victor Frankenstein and his creature, respectively. General admission: $15


On Thursday, December 29, at 7 pm, enjoy an encore presentation of National Theatre’s The Audience with the multi-award winning performance by Helen Mirren as Queen Elizabeth II. Winner of three Tony Awards® and two Olivier Awards, The Audience is written by Peter Morgan (The Queen) and directed by two-time Tony Award® winner and Academy Award®-nominated director Stephen Daldry (Billy Elliot, The Hours). For sixty years, Queen Elizabeth II has met with each of her twelve Prime Ministers in a private weekly meeting. This meeting is known as The Audience. No one knows what they discuss, not even their spouses. From the old warrior Winston Churchill, to the Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair right up to today’s meetings with the current incumbent David Cameron, the Queen advises her

Prime Ministers on all matters both public and personal. Through these private audiences, we see glimpses of the woman behind the crown and witness the moments that shaped a monarch. General admission: $15

Unless otherwise indicated, all concerts and events are held at the Shalin Liu Performance Center, 37 Main Street, Rockport, Massachusetts 01966. For tickets or more information, visit our website at www.rockportmusic.org or call 978.546.7391. The Jazz and Folk concert season Corporate Partners are Cape Ann Savings Band, the Cape Ann Savings Trust & Financial Services and Cranney Companies.




Sunday, November 27, 5 PM Felix Cavaliere’s Rascals

The Felix Cavaliere Rascals concert has been cancelled. We are working with the agent to re-schedule and details will be announced when a new date is set. Ticketholders have been notified.


Friday, January 20, 8 PM

Melissa Manchester

Tickets: $79, $72, $55

Saturday, January 21, 8 PM Marc Broussard

Tickets: $36, $29, $19

Saturday, January 28, 8 PM

Bettye LaVette Tickets: $46, $40, $29

Saturday, February 11, 8 PM Amy Black-Muscle Shoals Music Revue Tickets: $26, $20

Friday, March 3, 8 PM Jesse Colin Young Tickets: $49, $42, $35




Thursday, February 2, 7 PM


Lucian Msamati (Luther, Game of Thrones, NT Live: The Comedy of Errors) plays Salieri in Peter Shaffer’s iconic play, broadcast live from the National Theatre, and with live orchestral accompaniment by Southbank Sinfonia.

UK Certification: As Live 12A. Suitable for audiences 12 and up. Tickets: $22 Adults, $15 Seniors & Students

Thursday, February 23, 7 PM Saint Joan

Bernard Shaw’s classic play follows the life and trial of a young country girl who declares a bloody mission to drive the English from France. As one of the first Protestants and nationalists, she threatens the very fabric of the feudal society and the Catholic Church across Europe. Josie Rourke (Coriolanus, Les Liaisons Dangereuses) directs Gemma Arterton (Gemma Bovery, Nell Gwynn, Made in Dagenham) as Joan of Arc in this electrifying production. Rating: 12A. Appropriate for audiences 12 years old and up. Tickets: $22 Adults, $15 Seniors & Students

Thursday, March 9, 7 PM Hedda Gabler

Hedda and Tesman have just returned from their honeymoon and the relationship is already in trouble. Trapped but determined, Hedda tries to control those around her, only to see her own world unravel. Tony Award-winning director Ivo van Hove (A View from the Bridge at the Young Vic Theatre) returns to National Theatre Live screens with a modern production of Ibsen’s masterpiece. Ruth Wilson (Luther, The Affair, Jane Eyre) plays the title role in a new version by Patrick Marber (Notes on a Scandal, Closer). Rating: 12A. Appropriate for audiences 12 years old and up. Tickets: $22 Adults, $15 Seniors & Students



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