Five years ago, my dear friend Joanna Blendulf and I made a CD recording of our pardessus duo program. (The pardessus is such a rare little instrument--it was only played in France, and only during the 18th century!--that very few players perform on it today, and its charming repertoire gets much less attention than it deserves.) We worked so hard to prepare this virtuosic music. This is a program that we have invested years in and many hours of practice. We have taken our program to Portland, Eugene, San Francisco (SFEMS), Columbus, and Colombia. Sadly, the engineer lost the recording we made when his hard drive crashed, and he didn't have proper backups. You cannot imagine the feeling in the pit of our stomachs to learn this news.
Joanna and I have known each other since we were high school students and met at Interlochen Arts Camp, where we both were introduced to the viola da gamba by Mark Cudek and Ann Marie Morgan. Since then, we have been great friends, and a beautiful musical partnership has blossomed. We play fabulously together, if I may say so myself. There are a few people in this world, where – just like when you have a best friend, and conversation just comes so naturally and joyfully – we don’t even have to work to play together, but we know exactly what the other person is going to do. Joanna is one of these people. In technical, musical terms, our “ensemble” is pretty good.
After these years of licking our wounds, Joanna told me that she would be willing to record this program again. So, after a generous gift from Gregg Hill and Linda Holmberg, we decided to take the emotional plunge and make the recording once again in January of 2014. This time we had a great team: John Hadden, renowned early music engineer and producer, Fred Martens, our amazingly talented graphic designer, along with brilliant theorbo player David Walker and sparkling soprano Youngmi Kim. And, after over five years, we are actually BETTER! On June 19, our final product is due to arrive in the mail, entitled “Secret of the Muse.” The CD will be for sale at www.catacoustic.com, as well as through amazon.com and iTunes. You can be the first to own it buy purchasing it at our concerts on June 19 & 21.
What is the secret of the muse, you may ask? The secret is a dear friend.