Welcome to Barefoot Chamber Concerts. We present short  (60-75 minutes with no intermission) programs of really good chamber music in an informal setting.  All our regular Friday night programs are in the wonderful wooden acoustic of the Parish Hall of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 2300 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, and start at 6 p.m.   There will be snacks!

Last season, we added some Thursday night concerts in Petaluma; the experiment was rewarded by an enthusiastic response,  so this year we are again taking two of our concerts up North on the Thursday  (Musica Pacifica and the all-Dowland program).    We intend to continue “Barefoot North” as long as audiences support it.  This season we are also presenting two special events at the Hillside Swedenborgian Community Center in El Cerrito, the traditional fabulous preseason event on September 5 (see below), and a special late-night presentation of the Haydn “Seven Last Words of Christ” played by the New Esterházy Quartet on Good Friday, April 3rd.

We kick off with our traditional celebration of fun in music, wherein multi-instrumentalist and singer Shira Kammen will reprise her role as mistress of the preseason, this time with an equally  legendary local figure,  magician Kim Silverman.  They will present a concert of stories with music entitled Music, Magic, and Life.   We are fortunate that Shira has graced our series as the “keynote musician” for the last several years,  she brings something new, fresh, exciting and effortlessly inventive to every show.  She also brings a large and enthusiastic audience, so you’re advised to reserve early to be sure of getting in.    Like last year, the show will be in the Hillside Swedenborgian  Community Church in El Cerrito, against the backdrop of the sunset.  We hope you can make it, and we’re sure you’ll have a great time if you do.

Our regular 2014-15 Season brings you six concerts from very different spheres of chamber music, all in the lovely wooden acoustic of St. Mark’s Parish Hall on Bancroft in Berkeley.  In November we are once again very happy to be able to present Musica Pacifica, the West Coast’s leading Early Music group, playing a concert of Spanish Music “In the Gardens of Spain.”     In January,  Hallifax & Jeffrey  (the Barefoot House Band) will be joined by organist Andy Canepa for a rare and exquisite program of early 17th century music for viols and organ.  In FebruaryZeikampf (Faythe Vollrath and Stephen Gamboa, harpsichords) play another unusual and delightful program,  music for two harpsichords, including Rameau and W. F. Bach, entitled “Sehnsucht.”  In MarchQuaver (not your parent’s consort of viols: Marie Dalby Szuts, Brady Lanier, Tobi Szuts and Loren Ludwig, viols) play a concert of ancient and modern music.   In April we have a concert of songs and instrumental music by Dowland based on his 1612 collection “A Pilgrimes Solace” performed by Danielle Reutter-Harrah, soprano; Adam Cockerham, lute, with Marie Szuts, Julie Jeffrey, Tobi Szuts and Peter Hallifax, viols.

The November Musica Pacifica program and the April Dowland program will also be played on Thursdays in the Petaluma Woman’s Club, another great venue for chamber music.

Also Friday April 3 (Good Friday) we will present a special event:  a performance of Haydn’s “Seven Last Words of Christ” by The New  Esterházy Quartet, with readings by Dean Emeritus Alan Jones of Grace Cathedral.  This event will start at 10 pm in the Hillside Swedenborgian Church, El Cerrito.

Tickets are $15 at the door (Seniors and SFEMS members $13), ages 18 and under admitted free.  We encourage you reserve a seat by buying tickets online.    If you click the link next to the description of the concert for which you’d like to buy tickets, you will arrive at the BrownPaperTickets (fabulous efficient easy online “fair trade ticket service”) site for that particular concert. You can pay by credit card on their secure site and then BPT can snail-mail you the tickets or we’ll hold them for you at will-call at the door.