Recorder virtuoso stars with Philharmonia Baroque

Courtesy photoChamber music master: Marion Verbruggen appears in Italian-themed concerts with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra this weekend.

Courtesy photoChamber music master: Marion Verbruggen appears in Italian-themed concerts with Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra this weekend.

Time has not been kind to the recorder, but virtuoso Marion Verbruggen has.

The Dutch musician, appearing with San Francisco’s Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra in several Bay Area concerts this weekend, is among the instrument’s best-known masters.

Winner of many international competitions, she teaches at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, and performs with chamber music ensembles around the world.

Verbruggen calls San Francisco, where she often returns, “a special place. It’s one of my favorites: There’s a love for the music, and the public reaction is fantastic.” She adds, with a smile, “And the weather is a little better than at home.”

At age 5, Verbruggen started making music with the recorder. But unlike many who switch to more popular, powerful orchestral woodwind instruments such as the flute, oboe and clarinet, she made the recorder her primary instrument. (She also plays clarinet and various Renaissance and Middle Ages instruments, however.)

Verbruggen, who has made albums for major labels such as BMG, EMI, Erato and Harmonia Mundi, is acclaimed for effortless playing, florid ornaments, crisp accents and liquid passages while maintaining ideal breath control. She plays all kinds of recorders, including the tenor-, alto- and soprano-voiced instruments.

Among her specialties are her own recorder transcriptions of Bach’s Cello Suites and of 17th-century Spanish music originally written for various instruments.

The program for this weekend’s concert, called “Marion Verbruggen and the Italian Baroque Recorder,” includes concertos by Antonio Vivaldi’s Concerto for Alto Recorder (“La Tempeste di Mare”) and Giuseppe Sammartini’s Concerto for Soprano Recorder, with Verbruggen as the soloist, and late 17th- and early-18th-century orchestral works by Corelli, Gregori, Geminiani and Scarlatti.

Making his Northern California debut is conductor Ottavio Dantone, music director of the Accademia Bizantina Orchestra, a period instrument ensemble in Ravenna, Italy.

 

IF YOU GO

Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra with soloist Marion Verbruggen

Where: Herbst Theatre, 401 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco

When: 8 p.m. Friday

Tickets: $25 to $90

Contact: (415) 252-1288, www.cityboxoffice.com, www.philharmonia.org

Note: Concerts also are at 8 p.m. Saturday and 4 and 7:30 p.m. Sunday at First Congregational Church, 2345 Channing Way, Berkeley.

artsentertainmentmusicPop Music & Jazz

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Charles Joseph, who is represented by the San Francisco Public Defender’s office, is facing deportation to Fiji. <ins>(Courtesy photo)</ins>
Giving immigrants a second chance after incarceration

Legislation would allow some faced with deportation a chance to challenge their old convictions

The San Francisco Police Department released body camera footage of the alleged assault on Dacari Spiers. (Via SFPD Body Cam)
SF police officer to stand trial for assault over baton beating

A San Francisco police officer who prosecutors say unnecessarily beat a man… Continue reading

Mayor London Breed announced The City’s return to the red tier for COVID-19 precautions at Pier 39 on Tuesday<ins>, March 2, 2021</ins>. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
San Francisco enters red COVID tier, indoor dining to resume

Museums and gyms can reopen with capacity limits

Cole Odin Berggren, community programs director and drum and DJ instructor at Blue Bear School of Music in The City, holds a JackTrip device, which he says has greatly improved students’ experience of making music online. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
COVID-era musicians beginning to make connections

Software eliminates pesky delay plaguing most systems

Under the new plan, Twin Peaks Boulevard would be reserved exclusively for pedestrians and cyclists until Christmas Tree Point.	(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFMTA board approves new plan for Twin Peaks Boulevard

Cuts vehicle-free space by half. Neighbors say crime, vandalism will still abound

Most Read