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KAREN CLARK, contralto & CAROLINE JOU ARMITAGE, soprano

Caroline performed with “pitch-perfect clarity and affecting intensity”
                                                                                          —San Francisco Classical Voice

Karen Clark

KAREN CLARK, contralto & CAROLINE JOU ARMITAGE, soprano
Devotion and Deceit: Handel Opera Arias and Duets

Experience flashy and fiery arias as well as lustrous and luscious duets from Handel operas, including Giulio Cesare, Radamisto, Tolomeo, and Orlando.

PERFORMERS: Caroline Jou Armitage, soprano; Karen Clark, contralto; Anthony Martin, violin; Rachel Hurwitz, violin; Marieke Furnee, viola; Farley Pearce, baroque cello; Yuko Tanaka, harpsichord

Friday, June 8, 2018; 2:00 PM
TRINITY CHAPEL
2320 Dana Street, Berkeley, CA 94704

Price: FREE


Biographies

Soprano soloist Caroline Jou Armitage is dedicated to performing with the highest standard of musicianship and the most sensitive expressivity in an effort to delight and move the listener. Her interpretations have been described as “absolutely beautiful” and a recent performance of Bach’s Cantata No. 21Ich hatte viel bekümmernis” with the California Bach Society was delivered with “pitch-perfect clarity and affecting intensity” (San Francisco Classical Voice). After graduating from U.C. Berkeley in economics, she began formal studies in voice and later performed the roles of Laetitia in Menotti’s Old Maid and the Thief and Lucy Lockit in Britten’s The Beggar’s Opera in the Bay Area, and in Paris, Papagena and the First Lady in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte. Caroline was selected to participate in the Baroque Academy at the Amherst Early Music Festival, and in Berkeley, performed in the groundbreaking CalPerformances production of Alessandro Striggio’s Mass for 40 Voices under the direction of Davitt Moroney. She currently studies with Karen Clark in voice and Tamara Loring in harpsichord.

Also, as part of the Fringe this year, Caroline is presenting a solo harpsichord recital at Trinity Chapel in Berkeley on Tuesday, June 5, at 1:00 pm, featuring Bach’s Toccata in d minor BWV 913, a suite by Louis Couperin, and more. Anthony Martin, violin, will be a guest performer.

Contralto, KAREN R. CLARK has performed and recorded with world renown ensembles, to include, Sequentia, Boston Camerata, Project Are Nova, the Waverly Consort, New York Early Music, Pomerium Musices, and Joshua Rifkin’s Bach Ensemble. In new music, Karen has premiered and recorded works by award-winning composers, such as, Joseph Schwantner, Ben Johnston, Fred Frith, and Roy Whelden. Her recording with the Galax Quartet, On Cold Mountain: Songs on Poems of Gary Snyder (Innova) was the culmination of concerts with the Pulitzer Poet, Gary Snyder. Recently, Karen performed music of Bach with Sonoma Bach and Live Oak Baroque, and, recorded Joseph Schwantner’s song cycle, Dream Drapery: Songs on Thoreau. Composed for her and the Galax Quartet, the recording – on Music & Arts – is due for release July 2018.  Karen directs the women’s ensemble, Vajra Voices who this year performed on concert series of the San Francisco Early Music Society, Presidio Concerts, and the FULL series hosted by the Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive. Vajra Voices recording, O Eterne Deus: Music of Hildegard von Bingen is receiving international acclaim.  Karen holds degrees from the Indiana University School of Music where she studied with the legendary artists Virginia Zeani, and Thomas Binkley. Karen has served as private voice instructor and ensemble director in the music schools and departments of UC Berkeley, USC Thornton School of Music, Sonoma State University, Swarthmore College, and Princeton University. This summer Karen is on faculty for the SFEMS Medieval/Renaissance workshops.  www.karenrclark.com

Marieke Furnee was born and raised in Netherlands, where she received her master’s degree in violin. She played in Brabant Kamerorkest and toured the whole of Europe with the Ricciotti Ensemble, a street symphony orchestra. As a student, she had the chance to accompany many choirs performing Bach cantatas which helped her in developing an intuitive baroque style of playing. After moving to California, she played with Apollo Baroque Orchestra, Camerata California, Sacramento Baroque Soloists, and California Bach Society, and studied with Michael Sand. When she is not playing, you will find her working a giant vegetable garden in the Yuba foothills and homeschooling her son.

For over 20 years, violinist RACHEL HURWITZ has been active in the San Francisco Bay Area’s historical performance community, performing regularly with such ensembles as the American Bach Soloists, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, California Bach Society, Jubilate Baroque Orchestra, San Francisco Bach Choir, Marin Baroque, and the Albany Consort. As a modern violinist, Ms. Hurwitz serves as Principal Second Violin for the San Francisco Opera Center Orchestra, and completed six national tours with San Francisco Opera’s Western Opera Theater. A native of Eugene, OR, Ms. Hurwitz has been a member of the Oregon Bach Festival Orchestra for 32 years, and has performed with the Oregon Bach Festival Baroque Orchestra since its inaguration in 2014. She holds degrees from Oberlin College and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

Anthony Martin‘s original intention was to study trumpet, but this was before orthodontics, so his embouchure was judged more appropriate to a string instrument. He thus began violin in the 4th grade in his home town under the tutelage of a trombone player, and later switched to the local concertmaster. Anthony took part in the first concerts of the local Junior Symphony, before joining the grownup orchestra while in high school. At college he was exposed to the then-wacky concepts of historical performance practice, which have haunted him ever since—what did the music sound like when it was new? At that time he was playing recorder, krummhorn, dulzian, schawm, diving for the carpet between pieces to pick up one instrument after the other. He now confines himself to violin and viola. A fifteen-year eastern exile, first in Baltimore, later in Boston, gave him exposure to some excellent teachers and coaches. Since that time he has studied both with his colleagues and with shellac recordings. He was fortunate to take part in the very first concerts of many early music groups that still have some currency: Aston Magna, Banchetto Musicale (now Boston Baroque), the Smithsonian Chamber Players, Joshua Rifkin’s Bach Ensemble, Frans Brueggen’s Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century, PBO, ABS, the Artaria Quartet, the Novello Quartet, the New Esterházy Quartet, and Cantata Collective. He lives with his wife Titia, a Board Certified Music Therapist, on the Hayward Fault in Unincorporated Contra Costa County. They have two daughters, one son, and one son-in-law.

Farley Pearce has performed with the Spoleto Festival, the Charleston Pro Musica, and as a recitalist in Brazil and Uruguay.
Mr. Pearce has been an active free-lance performer with many of California’s orchestras and chamber ensembles, including the Jubilate Baroque Orchestra, S. Chordæ Consort of Viols, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Airs and Graces, and many other period instrument groups.

 

Yuko Tanaka is active as a harpsichord soloist and ensemble performer. She performs with numerous ensembles including Music of the Spheres, Philharmonia Baroque Chamber Players, Moscow Chamber Orchestra, and American Bach Soloists.
She has appeared with the San Francisco Symphony and the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra. She maintains a private studio, conducts master classes, and appears as guest lecturer at various universities. Ms. Tanaka holds a DMA from Stanford University.