Performance of Handel’s German Arias in Parksville

The performance features Catherine Webster, Marc Destrube, Natalie Mackie and Michael Jarvis

A rare complete performance of Handel’s German Arias, nine tender musical gems set to poems by Handel’s good friend Barthold Brockes, describing the joy and beauty to be found in nature, will be performed at Knox United Church this Friday.

The performance features Catherine Webster (soprano), Marc Destrube (baroque violin), Natalie Mackie (viola da gamba) and Michael Jarvis (harpsichord).

Webster, who has been a professional singer for more than 15 years, said she majored in music in university before studying early music, such as Baroque music, in grad school.

Webster said she heard a Baroque piece by a composer she hadn’t heard before, and that was how she become interested in the music.

“I heard a piece of music when I was 20 or 21 that really sparked my interest,” said Webster, adding that she felt her voice was suited to the Baroque repertoire.

The songs, set for a small ensemble with soprano, exemplify Handel’s ability to reflect a beautiful text in music and create a sense of dialogue between voices and instruments.

Webster said Handel’s music is accessible to everyone.

“The concert is really for anyone,” Webster said. “Some people will know these works, but it’s not as well known as his bigger choral pieces.”

Webster said the music is really engaging, adding that the poetry is full of nature and rejoicing in the beauty of the earth.

The Sweet Roses concert will be coming to Knox United Church (345 Pym St., Parksville) on Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. Doors open at 6:45 p.m.

Tickets are $25 or $20 for seniors and students. Tickets are available at the Parksville and Qualicum Beach Mulberry Bush book stores and Knox United Church. People can reserve tickets by email at or by phone at 250-248-3927.

The concert is put on by the Pacific Baroque Festival. For more information, visit

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