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The Instruments, The Music, The Artists

Gail Ann Schroeder and Asheville Baroque at the Carolina Music Museum

Sunday, July 15 at 3:00pm

Gail Ann Schroeder, and her ensemble of five musicians, Asheville Baroque, features two baroque violins, two baroque violas da gamba, and a harpsichord, and will be in concert Sunday afternoon July 15, at 3:00 PM, at the newly opened Carolina Museum on Heritage Green in downtown Greenville, SC. Their program, A French Celebration, celebrates the music of two great composers of the Baroque period, Marin Marais and a composer who was known at the time as “The Great”, Francois Couperin.

Audiences will enjoy a concert played on instruments for which Couperin and Marais wrote.  The baroque violin and viola da gamba resemble the modern violin and ‘cello, but there are significant differences, including the bow; the harpsichord, with an appearance resembling a piano is a stringed instrument, its strings are plucked, unlike a piano which is percussion instrument whose strings are struck by hammers. These instruments, these artists and this music are perfect for the intimate performance space at the Carolina Music Museum.

Schroeder, the artistic director of the Asheville Baroque concert series, is a graduate of the University of Michigan, furthered her studies on the viola da gamba at the Royal Music Conservatory of Brussels where she obtained the First Prize and Higher Diploma, with distinction. She has taught at numerous workshops for the Viola da Gamba Society of America, the Amherst Early Music Festival and Mountain Collegium, and has recorded for such labels as DHM, Sony Classical, Ricercar and Erato.

Baroque violinist, Jeanne Johnson, with a Master’s Degree with Distinction in Performance and Academics from the New England Conservatory, has been concertmaster for the Washington Bach Consort, and has toured and performed with many Baroque groups across the world, including Chatham Baroque, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Tafelmusik, Musica nel Chiostro in Tuscany, Portland Baroque, to name only a few.  A diverse performer, Jeanne has also toured with Vince Gill and Amy Grant. Her solo recordings may be found on the Magnatune and Centaur labels.

Margaret Humphreys, playing Baroque violin, tours with the Kingsbury Ensemble in St. Louis, and in chamber ensembles in the Ancient Music Series of St. Savin France. A founding member of Belladonna, she has toured nationally and internationally for festivals and music series and was featured on the syndicated radio shows Harmonia and Performance Today with two CDs on the Dorian and Ten Thousand Lakes labels. Humphrey has also recorded for Chandos and Naxos.

Webster Williams started his career as a double bassist, playing with the Miami Philharmonic while he earned a BA in performance. He moved to New York for graduate studies, where Suzanne Bloch, the daughter of the Swiss-American composer Ernest Bloch, introduced him to the viola da gamba. Afterward, he received a postgraduate degree in historical performance. He has been a chamber musician and soloist throughout the U.S., Europe and Latin America. A native of North Carolina, he now lives in Asheville.

Asheville Baroque’s harpsichordist is Barbara Weiss who teaches at the Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute and at both the Indiana University Recorder Performers Seminar and the Indiana University Recorder Academy. Previously she was on the faculties of the Oberlin Conservatory, the University of Minnesota and Concordia College while serving as music director of Ex-Machina. Ms. Weiss has performed at the Boston, San Antonio and Berkeley Early Music Festivals, the Winnipeg Folk Festival as well as with the Newbury Consort, the New International Trio, King’s Noise, Apollo’s Fire, and Second City Music. Ms. Weiss has recordings on both the Flying Fish and Harmonia Mundi labels.

Tickets go on sale Tuesday, July 2, and, with only 80 seats available, we urge everyone to make their reservations early.  $20 for adults, $5 for students with ID’s. Call 520-8807 to make your reservations. The July 15 concert will begin at 3:00 PM

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