Founded in 1995, and under the artistic leadership of violinist Boel Gidholm and cellist Christopher Haritatos since 2011, Publick Musick is a Rochester-based period-instrument ensemble that enriches the cultural landscape of Western New York by producing and presenting vibrant, historically informed performances of music from the 17th and 18th centuries and beyond. In our informal and engaging concerts, we perform well-known masterpieces, as well as sharing with our audiences the excitement of discovering and bringing to life unknown gems from the past. Our performers are nationally and internationally renowned Early Music professionals both from the local area and from further afield.

Highlights from the last few seasons include programs of rarely heard 17th-century German Christmas and Easter music, involving the audience in sing-along chorales; popular annual performances with the Italian Baroque Organ at the Memorial Art Gallery; a performance at the Eastman School of Music's Women in Music Festival of music of Isabella Leonarda, a 17th century Ursuline nun; a recital of the works of composers of African descent from the 18th through the 20th centuries; performances of chamber music of the Classical era using pianos modeled on those of the 18th century; and a concert of Bach Cantatas with Eastman's Craighead-Saunders organ in Christ Church Rochester.

In addition to these concert performances, the ensemble has also done educational presentations/performances for area colleges and universities such as SUNY-Brockport, RIT, and Genesee Community College-Dansville, as well as at Rochester's School of the Arts.

Publick Musick is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

Artistic Directors

Boel Gidholm has performed throughout Europe and the US as a baroque violinist and violist, working with early music ensembles such as Ensemble Aperto (Germany), the New York Collegium, ARTEK, Concert Royal, Pegasus Early Music, NYS Baroque and Ars Lyrica Houston. During her years in Austin, TX, she worked as a member of La Follia Austin Baroque and performed on both violin and vielle with Texas Early Music Project under the direction of Daniel Johnson. Since 2004 she has performed with the Victoria Bach Festival, TX, on both the modern and baroque versions of her instrument, with repertoire ranging from Biber to Britten and beyond.

Chamber music performances have taken her to Italy, France, Latvia, the Canary Islands, Canada and Denmark. She appears on recordings with Fiori Musicali-Barockorchester Bremen, Steintor Barock (Bremen), L’Arco (Hannover), Apollo's Fire, and The Publick Musick. She studied violin at the University of Gothenburg in her home country of Sweden, and studied baroque violin and performance practice at the Akademie für Alte Musik in Bremen, Germany. She lives in Rochester, NY, with her husband, Christopher Haritatos.

“Gidholm especially plays with an earthy directness, enthusiastically in sync with the music's emphasis on mercurial drama…” (Austin Chronicle)"

... the musical joy they transmitted in Stallet [the concert venue at Gränsö Castle] was spontaneous throughout, from the calmest adagio to the most violent presto...not only technically flawless, but with the ability to make this old music understandable in all its components." Västerviks Tidningen, Sweden (duo program with Christopher Haritatos).

Christopher Haritatos has gained a reputation as a passionate and intelligent performer as both a baroque and modern cellist. His work with period-instrument ensembles has spanned three continents and has brought to life music from the 1500s through the 1800s. He has collaborated in chamber music with artists such as Marc Destrubé, Kristian Bezuidenhout, and Sergiu Luca, and has played in ensembles such as Apollo's Fire (Cleveland), the Handel and Haydn Society (Boston), and Tafelmusik (Toronto). While living in Europe, he was the continuo cellist of Fiori Musicali-Barockorchester Bremen, with whom he took part in several recordings and tours, and worked with Andrew Lawrence-King’s ensemble “The Harp Consort.” Chris is now based in Rochester, NY, where he is a member of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, co-directs The Publick Musick, plays with Pegasus Early Music, and is the cellist of the baroque chamber ensemble Fioritura. Also sought after as a teacher, he has been on the faculty of Texas State University-San Marcos and has given workshops and master classes at several other colleges and universities. He holds degrees from the University of Chicago, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and the Eastman School of Music. His major teachers were Alan Harris, Steven Doane, Pieter Wispelwey, and Jaap ter Linden, with whom he studied as a Fulbright Scholar at the Akademie für Alte Musik Bremen.

Board of Directors

George Abraham
Tracey Boccia
Mitzie Collins
Marjorie Perlman
Jeremy Sher
Helen Smith