Mid-Peninsula Recorder Orchestra Newsletter

MAY 2002


Guest conductor Shira Kammen, always exuberant and vastly patient, helped us enjoy a bit of the music of late medieval and early renaissance composers Dufay, Landini and Machaut on April 14. It may have merely out of politeness, but she seemed impressed at our ability to manage the complex rhythms and get the sense of the music. Thanks for a wonderful evening, Shira.

Yet another season draws near to its close with this issue of UPBEAT. The real end, and our final exam, is the June 2 concert in a new location for us. The Portola Valley Civic Center may be a refreshing change from the many years in our previous venue in down town Palo Alto. Lets hope we draw an equally appreciative audience.

And a final word from me for the year. Our organization runs very smoothly. That there are very few bumps in our road is due to the work of our G.O.D. Fred, who is SUPER-organized, and your Officers, who make up the Board of Directors. Each of them has an important job to do and I invite you to reflect about the things that get done which may be taken for granted. Thanks to Mary Ashley we have a place to rehearse, (for FREE!) and we have her computer artistry to thank for those creative concert and workshop flyers. Flora Watson until recently, and now Marggie Dilley and Mary A. coordinate the copying and distribution of concert and workshop publicity. Also Marggie insures that our publicity gets out and our events listed in the SFEMS and ARS newletters.

Anyone in the world can know about us I they wish, thanks to Dan Chernikoff's set-up and maintenance of our web site. Laura Gonsalves sees that we each have well organized music at a very reasonable cost. Anne-Marie Wiggers insures that guest conductors get met, fed, and have a place to stay if necessary, and that we all have food, drink and a place to party twice each year. Chris Flake keeps track of you all who are members and affiliate members. George Greenwood tracks people making up consorts and sets them up for folks who want to be in one. Sonja Wilcomer, as historian, has produced a wonderful pictorial notebook of our important events since she's been on the board and sees that what we are and what we do is not forgotten. Dick Davies puts together this rag, and sees that you get it. Mary Carrigan collects dues and workshop fees, pays guest conductors and performers, applies for grants, and somehow keeps us out of the red. And what do I do? I sit back, let it all happen, and call a meeting every once in a while complete with pizza and wine, to see if everyone is happy or if anyone needs help. The major sweat I have is creating this message once a month, trying to make it informative, yeah even helpful to you, and not let it be a bunch of drivel.

The point is that, because our organization is seemingly seamless, the people who make it so VERY SELDOM get feed back from you, our members. Your Officers are listed with their phone numbers in each issue of UPBEAT, and most can also be reached by their email address which can be found in our membership list. If you like what someone is doing, or if you have a suggestion which might make their job easier, please pick up the phone or drop them a note.

Have a great summer; more from Moi in September.

Stevie White


Dear members of the Mid-Peninsula Recorder Orchestra,

Listed below is the music scheduled for the last two meetings in May. Please note that the meeting on May 29 is the dress rehearsal for the spring concert and will take place at the Portola Valley Town Center Multi-Use Room, 765 Portola Road in Portola Valley, at 7:30 P.M. The spring concert will take place at the Portola Valley Town Center Multi-Use Room on Sunday, June 2 at 2:00 P.M. All those who wish to take part in this concert should initial next to their names on a sign-up sheet , available at the orchestra's meetings through May 15.

Small ensembles are also encouraged to appear in this concert, and those groups which intend to perform on June 2 are asked to give me the following information by May 15: the title(s) of the music to be performed, the name(s) of the composer(s), the name of the ensemble (if any) and the names of the ensemble's members.

Please note that we will need the services of all the orchestra's krummhorn players at the dress rehearsal on May 29. All those who intend to take part in the concert on June 2 should plan on attending the May 29 dress rehearsal.

May 15 MPRO Rehearsal
Lassus: Matona mia cara
Brahms: Es ist ein Ros' entsprungen
Landini: Che pena Ť quest'al cor
Rozhinkes mit Mandeln
May 29 Dress Rehearsal
Portola Valley Town Center Multi-Use Room
765 Portola Road, Portola Valley,
7:30 P.M.

Soderino: L'Angelina
Vejvanovsky: Serenada
Landini: Che pena Ť quest'al cor
Haydn: Divertimento in F, Finale
Rozhinkes mit Mandeln
Pšrt: Pari Intervallo
Lassus: Matona mia cara
Brahms: Es ist ein Ros' entsprungen

I encourage all MPRO members to take part in the performance on June 2 and to invite their family and friends to attend. Once again, I would like to thank the orchestra's membership for their enthusiasm, hard work and fine playing during the 2001-2002 season as well as welcome those who recently joined MPRO. I would also like to express my appreciation to all those who volunteered to take part in the MPRO video recording on March 16. The exceptional quality of this recorded performance will not only be an asset to the orchestra in future outreach efforts but will also serve as a permanent reminder of the talent and dedication of those who make up the orchestra.

As always, special thanks go to the orchestra's officers for their invaluable expertise in seeing to the necessary tasks which make MPRO's programs possible and especially to Mary Ashley for arranging for the orchestra's rehearsal facilities, Mary Carrigan for managing the orchestra's finances and orders for copies of MPRO's video recording, as well as Stevie White who, as president, has so generously offered the orchestra the benefit of her time and talents. I wish all MPRO members the very best this summer and look forward to seeing all of you again in September when we begin our 2002-2003 season.

Fred Palmer


While browsing the web the other day, I ran across a very nice Recorder Orchestra web page from a amateur group in England. They are called "The Hampshire Recorder Sinfonia", consist of about 25 members, and are located in Hampshire County, UK. Looking through their web site I saw many similarities to MPRO, especially their obvious love for recorders and for making music. They haven't taped a TV program yet (like we have!), but note that they have made two CD recordings through government funding from The Arts Council of England. They also have a great section on "The Recorder Family Tree" teaching about the different types of recorders, including sound files of Sopranino through Great Bass recorders. Take a look at their web site if you want to see what Recorder Orchestras are like on the other side of the world.

You can find a link to the Hampshire Recorder Sinfonia on the MPRO web site, http://www.sfems.org/mpro. Just go to our "Links" page and scroll down to the "Performers and Groups" section -- you can't miss it! (Editorís note: I did and listened to their CD samples. They sound great!)

Dan Chernikoff
MPRO Webmaster


Our party immediately after the spring concert this year will at Diana Fischerís house. Her house is located in Portola Valley, not far from where the concert will be held. See Anne-Marie Wiggers for details.


One of our future projects will be selecting and purchasing a Contrabass to be featured in orchestra selections, played by members of the orchestra. Many thanks to people who contributed to MPRO's Contrabass fund over the last few years. They include Len Greenwood (now living in Georgia), Stevie White, Esther Lederberg, John O'Neill, Mary Jeanne Fenn and Mary Carrigan. We now have $1,795. A contrabass will cost around $4000 for a conventional round bore design, and about half that amount for a square bore design. All contributions to the orchestra are tax-deductible so think of your MPRO when making your charitable contributions.

Berkeley Early Music Festival, June 2 - 9

From the colorful spectacle of a Renaissance equestrian ballet to the rich and luxurious sounds of the 16th and 17th-century Spanish melodies to the grand orchestrations of J.S. Bach's celebratory cantatas, the Seventh Biennial Berkeley Festival & Exhibition brings to life the glorious sights and sounds of centuries past. Please visit http://bfx.berkeley.edu for a complete performance schedule, ticket and venue information, to request a brochure, and for information on additional Festival events. Or contact their Ticket Office at (510) 642-9988. Join us for this week-long celebration of the best in early music.


A one-day get-together ("mixer") of early music musicians from the Sacramento Davis area to participate in organized jam sessions and a big group play-in. Will be held at Davis Community Church, 412 C Street, Davis, CA, at 8:00 a.m. (registration), 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. MUSIC! The cost is $10 to defray the cost of the music and the space. Pre-registration is strongly encouraged, as group leaders need to prepare the right amount of music and if you want lunch. PLEASE RSVP to Xan at zadekia@pacbell.net

Sacramento Davis Early Music - http://home.pacbell.net/zadekia/earlymusic.html