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Musicians of Ma'alwyck Concert Thursday

Written By Editor on 6/21/22 | 6/21/22

SCHOHARIE - The Old Stone Fort, a Schoharie icon, was constructed in 1772 as a High Dutch Reformed Church. Throughout its 250-year history, the fort has acted as a place of worship, a Sunday school, an armory, a Revolutionary War fort, and finally, a museum dedicated to preserving and presenting the rich history of Schoharie County and its people.

On Thursday, June 23, at 7 p.m. the Musicians of Ma’alwyck will lead a celebration of the 250th anniversary of the stone church’s construction with a performance of “Buxtehude’s Daughter” cantat

Proceeding the performance, Schoharie County Historian Ted Shuart will present a brief history of the 18th-century church and give insights into its connections to the Schoharie Reformed Church, the host for the evening’s celebration.

Owned by Schoharie County, the Old Stone Fort Museum is a collaborative venture with the Schoharie County Historical Society. It has operated as a museum since 1889, after receiving its official charter from the state of New York.

Musicians of Ma’alwyck is a professional chamber music ensemble in residence at the Schuyler Mansion New York State Historic Site and at Schenectady County Community College. They were founded in 1999 by violinist Ann-Marie Barker Schwartz who is also the director of the ensemble.

Their June 23 performance of the comedic “Buxtehude’s Daughter” cantata helps show that although Johann Sebastian Bach was never much of a comedian, his legacy offers some chances for laughter.

In 1705, Bach took a 250-mile walk to meet one of his heroes, fellow organist-composer Dietrich Buxtehude. He wanted to hear the soon-to-retire Buxtehude’s music, and apply to fill his soon vacant position. One of the requirements for winning the post, however, was to marry Buxtehude’s daughter, Anna. After meeting Anna, Bach, along with many other would-be candidates for the position, withdrew his application. “Buxtehude’s Daughter,” with music by Thomas F. Savoy and lyrics by Byron Nilsson, turns this legendary meeting into a hilarious impasse, suggesting that Johann and Anna were too particular in their demands to be suited for one another.

This Musicians of Ma’alwyck production features Yvonne Trobe singing the role of Anna, Charles F. Schwartz as Bach, and lyricist Nilsson as a bemused Buxtehude. The accompanying ensemble comprises Ann-Marie Barker Schwartz, violin and leader; Norman Thibodeau, flute; and AndrĂ© Laurent O’Neil, cello, with guest artist Malcolm Kogut at the keyboard.

Admission to the concert is a suggested $10 donation. Space is limited, so you are encouraged to reserve your spot for the performance by calling the Old Stone Fort Museum at (518) 295-7192.

This project has been made possible with funds from the Statewide Community Regrants Program, a program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature and administered in Columbia County by the Greene County Council on the Arts d.b.a. CREATE Council for the Arts.

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