Flauti Diversi was founded in 1992 by Frances Feldon at the San Francisco Early Music Society’s recorder workshop with the mission of presenting early chamber music for historical woodwinds. It has since received an enthusiastic reception at its performances, including those at the SFEMS Recorder Workshop, MusicSources, Marin Early Music Festival, in conjunction with the Berkeley Early Music Festival, Davis Community Church, St John’s Lutheran Church (Sacramento), Kensington Unitarian Church, Music at Old St Mary’s, Music at St Alban’s, and Hausmusik concert series. From 1992 until 2002, Flauti performed baroque solo sonatas, duos, trios and quartets, recreating the virtuosity and subtlety of 17th- and 18th-century European music. From 2002 to 2007, under music director Frances Feldon, Flauti Diversi produced its own concert series “Baroque and Beyond,” and its musical mission expanded to include contemporary works. Flauti has been an affiliate of SFEMS since 2005.
The ensemble includes a variety of performers and instruments appropriate to the program repertoire, which allows Flauti to incorporate the novel panoply of sounds and colors on a wide variety of baroque woodwinds and other historical instruments. In addition to the more usual recorder and baroque flute, its members have performed on less common instruments such as chalumeau, baroque clarinet and bassoon, supported by a continuo of harpsichord and viola da gamba. Performers have included many Bay Area professionals: Farallon Recorder consort members Annette Bauer, Letitia Berlin, Frances Blaker, and Louise Carslake; Vicki Boeckman, recorder; contralto Karen Clark; gambists David Morris and Roy Whelden; violinists Tekla Cunningham and David Wilson; violist Anthony Martin; harpsichordists Katherine Heater and Yuko Tanaka; and Hanneke van Proosdij, harpsichordist/recorder.
Flauti Diversi draws on works from the French courts with the elegant music of Marais and Boismortier; dazzling virtuoso Italian music by Sammartini and Vivaldi; works from the inventive pens of German composers Telemann, JS Bach and CPE Bach; the flute quartets of WA Mozart. These composers combined the sounds of recorders and flutes along with other wind instruments, strings and keyboard to produce music with a wide palette of character and timbre. It has also presented works by contemporary composers such as Stockhausen and Matthias Maute, and popular arrangements by Ms Feldon of pop artists such as The Beatles.
Flauti Diversi, with core members Frances Feldon, David Morris, and Katherine Heater, is currently presenting a program of the complete trio sonatas of Opus 37, by Joseph Bodin de Boismortier, for traverso, viola da gamba and chamber organ including its concert at the Berkeley Early Music Festival, in preparation for its first recording in August 2012.
Frances Feldon (baroque flute/recorder) lives in Berkeley, CA, and has performed with California Bach Society, Sonoma Bach, Ensemble Mirabile, Farallon Recorder Consort, and the SF Boys Choir. She is the music director of Flauti Diversi, a baroque/contemporary chamber music ensemble; and the Barbary Coast Recorder Orchestra (Voices of Music afiliate). She teaches recorder and baroque flute at her studio in Berkeley, and conducts the recorder program at Albany Adult School. She is a regular conductor and faculty member at recorder workshops in North America. She directed the San Francisco Early Music Society’s Recorder Workshop for twenty years; founded and directed SFEMS Collegium series for a number of years; and directed its Evening Class programs as well. She has conducted her arrangements of Gershwin and Ellington classics at international recorder festivals in Montreal and Holland. Among her current projects: writing on jazz and pop recorder players for the magazine American Recorder. Dr Feldon studied recorder and baroque flute at Indiana University’s Early Music Institute, where she completed a doctorate in collegium directing. She has taught at Indiana University, UC Davis, Albany Adult School, and The Greenwood School in Mill Valley, CA.
David Morris (viola da gamba/violoncello) performs with the renaissance violin band The King’s Noyse, the 17th-century ensemble Quicksilver, the Galax Quartet and the New York State Baroque Ensemble. He has performed with the Boston Early Music Festival Orchestra, Tragicomedia, Tafelmusik, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Musica Pacifica, American Bach Soloists, Musica Angelica, Seattle Baroque Orchestra, the Mark Morris Dance Company, and Seattle’s Pacific Musicworks. He was the founder and musical director of the Bay Area baroque opera ensemble Teatro Bacchino, and has produced operas for the Berkeley Early Music Festival and the San Francisco Early Music Society series. Mr. Morris received his B.A. and M.A. in Music from U.C. Berkeley, and has been a guest instructor in early music performance-practice at UC Berkeley, UC Santa Cruz, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Mills College, Oberlin College, the Madison Early Music Festival and Cornell University. He has recorded for Harmonia Mundi, New Albion, Dorian, New World Records, Drag City Records (with Joanna Newsom) and New Line Cinema.
Katherine Heater, (historical keyboards: harpsichord, organ, fortepiano) frequently plays with early music groups such as Magnificat and the Voices of Music. She has performed throughout the United States, including with Catacoustic Consort in Ohio, the Sun Valley Summer Symphony in Idaho and at the Berkeley Early Music Festival, the Bloomington Early Music Festival, and the Tropical Baroque Festival of Miami. She received her BA from the University of California, Berkeley in music, and Masters of Music in historical performance from Oberlin Conservatory. At the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam Ms. Heater studied harpsichord with Bob van Asperen and fortepiano with Stanley Hoogland. Also an active teacher, Ms. Heater teaches harpsichord at UC Berkeley and privately.