This year a number of notable musicians will be joining the Baroque Workshop’s faculty for the first time.
Bay Area listeners will have heard Kati Kyme many times with Philharmonia and American Bach Soloists, both as concertmistress, and as soloist. She also conducts young players in the California Youth Symphony’s prep division, passing on her remarkable music making and enthusiasm to the next generation. You can play under her baton this summer in the Baroque Workshop Orchestra.
Another regular player in Philharmonia and American Bach Soloists, Bill Skeen is also a frequent player of chamber music, always imparting a sense of ease and mastery. Bill also spends part of each summer playing cello and viola da gamba at the Carmel Bach Festival.
Completing our string department is Mary Springfels, a compelling performer of the viola da gamba. Mary teaches not only how to play the notes, but also gives the background history of the compositions …. all while bringing out the best of each player. She will help viol students improve their sound and dexterity while giving insight into performing styles and modes of expression.
Soprano Rita Lilly, a recent transplant to the Bay Area, is singing all over the place….. everything from solos with Magnificat and ABS to chamber music with the Momsemble (with fellow Mom’s, and a few Dads of young children, one of whom is Bill Skeen). Vocalists at the Baroque Workshop can look forward to learning the finer points of her elegant singing in an atmosphere of joy in music making.
Besides Rita, we are joined this year by another fine vocalist, Baritone David Newman of Virginia, who has also performed in our area with ABS and at the Carmel Bach Festival. Don’t miss this chance, vocalists, to study with two such fine singers working together.
Wind players too will find a wealth of learning and playing opportunities with the Baroque Workshop’s unique combination of stellar musicians. We continue to offer a bassoon program, this year led by another new faculty member, Anna Marsh. An active performer in Seattle, her current home, Anna has performed all across the country from Los Angeles to Rhode Island. She will work together with Baroque oboist Sand Dalton to give double reed players a delightful mix of technique, interpretation, and the nuts and bolts of reed making. Sand has been Baroque Workshop’s longtime oboe instructor, bringing his inimitable mix of easy-going charm, splendid playing, and after-hours fun.
Recorder virtuoso Marion Verbruggen returns this year to give you technical challenges you had not yet imagined and to demand your utmost musicality, all in the kindest way possible. She will encourage students to think of their pieces in a completely new way. An hour in her master class will give fodder for development the whole coming year and offers a chance to work on the art of performance.
Frances Blaker, our local master of recorder, makes the most difficult things reachable, revitalizing the joy of music in even the most jaded player. Students can take the new challenges from Marion’s class to Frances’ morning technique class for further study. She will also offer individual lessons and instruction in performance practices.
Traverso (Baroque flute) player Kathleen Kraft brings her musicality, pure tones, and sparkling allegros to flute players from across the country. She offers a mix of musical interpretation with demanding technical work to prepare students for whatever repertoire they may encounter in the wide world.
And finally, we have that remarkable keyboardist Peter Sykes. An organist by profession, Peter is a fine harpsichord soloist and a master of the art of continuo playing. Harpsichordists can find no one better to lead them on their quest to improve technique and interpretation. Baroque Workshop offers the ideal opportunity for trained organists and pianists to learn the basics of this vital component of Baroque music and to delve into the fantastic solo repertoire.
The SFEMS Baroque Workshop offers a unique opportunity for amateur and pre-professional singers and players to study and play baroque music for a week of intensive classes with a world-class faculty. Professional musicians who are trying out Baroque versions of their instruments, or who wish to learn or brush up on Baroque performance practices also find much to learn with us – organists come to learn the art of continuo playing; modern flutists and modern string players learn to play 18th century instruments, learn Baroque style, use baroque bows. Cellists learn to play the viola da gamba; singers come to work on Baroque style with our vocal faculty.
Mornings offer master classes in our full range of instruments and voice. These master classes run the gamut from performance and critique of prepared repertoire to in-depth discussion of treatises and sources. Afternoons offer a multitude of ensemble experiences, from coached chamber ensembles to choir and orchestra. Students can learn about interpretation and performances practices in a mixed instrument ensemble class, or learn the basics of figured bass. Evening lectures/demonstrations, faculty concerts and a variety of student performances round out the day.