The Sebastians (www.sebastians.org) are a dynamic and vital musical ensemble specializing in music of the baroque and classical eras. Lauded as “everywhere sharp-edged and engaging” (The New York Times), the Sebastians have also been praised for their “well-thought-out articulation and phrasing” (Early Music Review) and “elegant string playing… immaculate in tuning and balance” (Early Music Today).
Winners of the Audience Prize at the 2012 Early Music America Baroque Performance Competitions, the Sebastians were also finalists in the 2011 York International Early Music Competition and the 2011 Early Music America/Naxos Recording Competition. They have participated in the Carnegie Hall Professional Training Workshop with L’Arpeggiata, and have performed at Music Matters (LaGrua Center in Stonington, CT), Friends of Music at Pequot Library (Southport, CT), Juilliard in Aiken (Aiken, SC), in the Twelfth Night Festival and Concerts@One at Trinity Wall Street (New York, NY), and on the Early Music in Columbus series (Ohio).
The Sebastians performed over 35 concerts in the 2013–14 season, including performances of Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas at the Connecticut Early Music Festival and Monteverdi’s Poppea with dell’Arte Opera Ensemble, and residencies at Connecticut College and the Avaloch Farm Music Institute. They also recorded their début CD, Night Scenes from the Ospedale, which pairs Vivaldi concerti from L’Estro Armonico with newly composed interludes by Robert Honstein.
In 2014–2015, the Sebastians continue for the third season as ensemble-in-residence at All Angels’ Church in New York City. In addition, their season includes collaborations with TENET, a production of Purcell’s Fairy Queen, four week-long engagements with acclaimed vocal ensemble Seraphic Fire in Miami, a performance on the Houston Early Music Series, and numerous performances in New York and Connecticut.
…everywhere sharp-edged and engaging… The New York Times
The musical quality was further enhanced by the presence of the [Sebastians], a leading young early-music ensemble, which performed beautifully throughout. The New York Times
…of the demand for this group, there can be little doubt…. energetic… youthful, vigorous performance style… The New York Times
…fast-rising group of period-instrumentalists that opened its own season with a lively concert on Saturday… The New York Times
…the instrumental ensemble… including fine musicians from the Sebastians, played with stylistic authority and rhythmic verve… The New York Times
…a worthy addition to any concert series accustomed to hearing leading mainstream string quartets. Early Music America
…well-thought-out articulation and phrasing… Early Music Review
…elegant string playing… immaculate in tuning and balance… Early Music Today
The Sebastians took us on a delightful journey, one in which lucid, subtle playing left space for the emotion and wit… the audience had been thoroughly seduced by the ensemble’s deft balance of firebrand playing and classical elegance. Seen and Heard International
Supporting these aims, Dell’Arte scored a canny coup for its first opera from the baroque repertoire by inviting the up-and-coming period-instrument ensemble The Sebastians to form the core of the Poppea band. …the Sebastians surely provided a salutary grounding for a crew of singers with little or no experience in this kind of music. Parterre Box
The singers were helped by taut ensemble playing from conductor Jeffrey Grossman and The Sebastians, a period chamber ensemble. Superconductor Blog