When: Sat., Dec. 6, 8 p.m. and Sun., Dec. 7, 7:30 p.m. 2008
The EastBay is resplendent with baroque riches this week. While Magnificat brings us a Venetian Christmas Celebration that includes two new singers and music by two lesser-known Venetian composers, Giovanni Antonio Rigatti and MassimilianoNeri, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra scores extra points (at least on paper) with its guest conductor, the internationally renowned founder of Concerto Italiano, RinaldoAlessandrini, and music by the masters -- Vivaldi, Handel, Corelli, Geminiani, A. Scarlatti (sung by soprano Marta Almajano), and the lesser-known Dall'Abaco. True baroque aficionados will want to attend both concerts. At First Congregational Church (2345 Channing Way, Berkeley) on Saturday, Dec. 6 (8 p.m.), and Sunday, Dec. 7 (7:30 p.m.). $30-$72, student rush $10. Philharmonia.org or 415-392-4400.
Jason Victor Serinus