BATH – The Oratorio Chorale will offer a mid-winter concert of music spanning three eras of song: Elizabethan madrigals, popular songs of the early- to mid-1900s in the United States, and sacred and secular songs of Felix Mendelssohn, who celebrates his 200th birthday this month.

Concerts, under the direction of Peter Frewen, will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21, at the United Church of Christ in Bath; and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 22, at Sacred Heart Church in Yarmouth.

“Song binds our present program, song from three eras and three subcultures of western European musical tradition – a mix of moods and voices from Renaissance to Ragtime,” said Frewen. The psalms of Orlando de Lassus and love songs of the Renaissance create moods of both celebration and playfulness.

This theme is continued in the secular (love) and sacred songs of Mendelssohn, which are the centerpiece of the program. Mendelssohn’s virtuosity is further expressed in a piano solo, “Variations Serieuses” in D minor, Op. 54, played by accompanist Ben Heller. Music by Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, Joe Garland and others display the romantic vitality and toe-tapping rhythms of music in the early 20th century.

A 2008 graduate of the University of Southern Maine School of Music, Heller is a collaborator and coach in the Portland area. He has performed with such groups as the Portland Symphony Orchestra, the Portland Ballet and nearly every large ensemble at USM.

Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at door. Students pay half price and children under 12 are admitted free. Tickets are available from chorale members and at Starbird Music and Longfellow Books, Portland; Books Etc., Falmouth; Claytons’ in Yarmouth; Gulf of Maine Bookstore, Brunswick; Mason Street Mercantile and Magnolia’s in Bath; and Treats, Wiscasset.

For more information, call (207) 725-1420 or visit


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