Reply To: Orpheus Recorder Boutique

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Caroline Webb

This year Zana Clarke (organiser) said there were 71 participants in all, which I think may have included tutors. She read out origins at the beginning: there was one from Tasmania, also the Northern Territory and Western Australia, a couple from New Zealand including tutor Kamala Bain, and the rest were from up and down the east coast and SA apart from tutor Maria Martinez Ayerza, who is from Spain. The other tutors were regulars Ruth Wilkinson (Vic) and Hans-Dieter Michatz (NSW), and newcomer Hannah Coleman (Vic). It was a terrific experience, as always. Hans-Dieter was my tutor for technique–fabulous–and Kamala for small ensemble, which was great. Maria took both the large ensembles, which played separately and together at the final concert, and also tutored in the late afternoon Repertoire Raptures.

There are always many different levels of experience and aspiration represented at the course. We get a few children and a number of teenagers, some of them serious and expert like the Leske sisters–people who might go on to be professionals–as well as lots of older people, many of them retirees, who are devoting time and energy to serious and in this case intensive study of the recorder. Zana generally manages to sort people effectively into groups of approximately equal skill levels, so that individuals aren’t bored or discouraged. I’ve attended six of the eight six-day workshops since 2006 (there wasn’t one in 2012) and have always found it tremendously worthwhile.