Ensemble Mirable (Mirable—Old French,meaning astonishing, strong, powerful) is a San Francisco Bay Area based period instrument ensemble that originated in 1996 at Indiana University’s Early Music Institute where Joanna Blendulf and JungHae Kim were then studying. Since its inception, the group’s focus has been on exploring the many variations in continuo performance across different baroque styles and on bringing the music of lesser known composers to the public’s attention. Mirable has built an impressive reputation over the ensuing years, earning awards from Early Music America and critical acclaim for performances to enthusiastic audiences in San Francisco and throughout the United States. Over the past decade, in addition to live performances, Mirable has been engaged in producing a series of high quality compact disc recordings that now includes Triemer Six Cello Sonatas, The Virginalists, Conversations Galantes, Jean Henri D’Anglebert; Pieces de clavecin, 1689 Paris, and Influenza Italiana.
Harpsichordist JungHae Kim’s playing has been described as inspired, fluid, emotionally exquisite, warm, and inviting. Her unique style blends a sparkling virtuoso technique with a gentle and lyrical sensibility. JungHae holds a Bachelors Degree in Harpsichord Performance from the Peabody Conservatory, and a Masters Degree in Historical performance in Harpsichord from the Oberlin Conservatory. She completed her studies with Gustav Leonhardt in Amsterdam on a Haskell Scholarship, and holds an Advanced Degree in Harpsichord Performance from Amsterdam’s Sweelinck Conservatorium. JungHae has performed in concert throughout United States, Europe and in Asia as a soloist and with numerous fine historical instrument ensembles including American Baroque, Brandywine Baroque, Musica Angelica, Music’s ReCreation, Agave Baroque, and Ensemble Mirable. She has also soloed with some of California’s premier modern ensembles including the San Francisco Symphony and the New Century Chamber Orchestra. During her summers, JungHae has performed on a number of music festival series including the Britt Festival (Oregon), the Assisi Music Festival (Italy), Music In The Vineyards (Napa, CA), the Bloomington Early Music Festival (Indiana), and at the Hawaii Performing Arts Festival. For additional information including information regarding upcoming concerts, please visit JungHae’s website: http://www.junghaekim.com. Recordings may be purchased online at iTunes, through Magnatune at http://www.magnatune.com, or by contacting Ms. Kim.
Viola da Gambist Joanna Blendulf has performed as soloist and continuo player in leading period instrument ensembles throughout the United States. Ms. Blendulf holds performance degrees with honors from the Cleveland Institute of Music and Indiana University School of Music. In 1998, she was awarded the prestigious Performer’s Certificate for her accomplishments in early music from Indiana University. Joanna is currently performing with the Portland Baroque Orchestra, Musica Angelica Baroque Orchestra, Bach Collegium San Diego and Pacific Musicworks in Seattle and has been a guest artist of Early Music Vancouver in British Colombia. Ms. Blendulf is also an active chamber musician, performing and touring internationally with the Cascade Consort, Catacoustic Consort, Ensemble Electra, Ensemble Mirable, Nota Bene Viol Consort (Boston) and Wildcat Viols. Joanna’s summer engagements have included performances at the Bloomington, Boston and Berkeley Early Music Festivals, the Aspen and Ojai Music Festivals as well as the Carmel and Oregon Bach Festivals. Ms. Blendulf is sought-after as a teacher and chamber music coach and regularly serves on faculties of viola da gamba workshops across the country.
Violinist Elizabeth Blumenstock is widely admired as a performer of interpretive eloquence and technical sparkle.A frequent soloist, concertmaster, and leader with the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, the American Bach Soloists, and the Italian ensemble Il Complesso Barocco, she is also the music director of the new Los Angeles-based Baroque ensemble, Les Surprise Baroques.She has pursued her love of chamber music as a founding member of several of California’s finest period-instrument ensembles, including Musica Pacifica, Live Oak Baroque Orchestra, the Arcadian Academy, Ensemble Mirable, Trio Galanterie, and the Galax Quartet.She has taught at the University of Southern California and the International Baroque Institute at the Longy, Oberlin’s Baroque Performance Institute, and the Austrian Baroque Academy.Elizabeth has recorded for Harmonia Mundi, Deutsche Grammophon, Virgin Classics, Dorian, BMG, and Koch International, among others.
Violinist Kati Kyme has been a member and frequent concertmaster of both Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and American Bach Soloists for many years. Recordings of Kati playing Vivaldi Concerti with PBO can be found on Harmonia Mundi, and Corelli Concerti Grossi (with violinist Libby Wallfisch) can be heard on Koch. In addition to her work with Bay Area chamber orchestras, she is a passionate chamber musician. She has played in the prizewinning Artaria and Sierra Quartets, with Nic McGegan’s Arcadian Academy, and in the Streicher Trio. Currently she plays with the String Circle, which is in the middle of a complete Beethoven Quartet Cycle, and the New Esterhazy Quartet which is the first quartet in North America to perform all 68 Haydn Quartets on period instruments. She is also devoted to teaching and has held positions at University of Puget Sound, the Cornish Institute and at Sonoma State University. Currently, she conducts 180 young string players in three orchestras of the California Youth Symphony
Kevin Cooper is a classical and baroque guitarist from central California with an affinity for the extremes of modern and early music. Kevin performs as a soloist and as a member of the Coprario Consort, Agave Baroque, and Ensemble Mirable. He publishes and records for Lifescapes, Lorenz Corporation, and Doberman Editions. Some of his titles include Night of Four Moons, a recording of new music for voice and guitar; Cold Genius, a recording of baroque music by Henry Purcell; Purloined Pearls, a collection of arrangements for guitar ensemble; and Snakes, Snails, and C Major Scales, a book of folk and children’s songs. In 2006 Kevin was honored as the Outstanding Doctoral Graduate in music from the University of Southern California where he studied with William Kanengiser and James Tyler. Currently he leads the guitar program at Fresno City College.