Dust off your jabots and pile those curls up high, Houston early-music aficionados, for Ars Lyrica’s returning with a season that’s too hot to Handel.

While the selection of “turning points” as this season’s through-line might seem too obvious, the theme was actually a carryover from the previous season-that-never-was,the organization’s artistic and executive directors Matthew Dirst and Kinga Ferguson, explained in a statement. “So, in 2021/22 we pick up where we left off: with programming that highlights crucial moments in the lives of individuals and cultures, fictional and real.”

The season begins on September 24 with Bach, Handel, and Hercules, Ars Lyrica’s return to the Hobby Center stage that features a Hercules-centered morality tale set to music by J. S. Bach and G. F. Handel. Other highlights from the wide-ranging offerings include holiday offering Crossing Borders, which combines European, Latin American, and Indigenous music traditions into one program, and a new staging of Henry Purcell’s English opera, Dido and Aeneas, which closes the season next May.

Rounding out the season are two performances of The Well-Tempered Clavier at Rienzi, Dirst’s tricentennial celebration of Bach’s preludes and fugues collection, The Well-Tempered Clavier, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston’s Rienzi.

Don’t you just love it when we see Ars Lyrica thinking outside the Bach?

More info and tickets at arslyricahouston.org. See the full schedule below. 

Ars Lyrica 2021-2022 Schedule

Sept 24: Bach, Handel, and Hercules

Oct 16: The Well-Tempered Clavier

Nov 13: Eternity and the Underworld

Dec 17:  Crossing Borders

March 27, 2022: An Uncommon Chevalier

May 21: Dido and Aeneas

June 4, 2022: The Well-Tempered Clavier