Legends of Reed is an interview series conducted by Jo Anne Sukumaran with top double reed musicians from around the world. The aim of this podcast is to share knowledge, educate and inspire other musicians.
Season 3 Episode 3: Judith Farmer
On this episode, I am pleased to have bassoonist, Judith Farmer on the show. We had an interesting chat about interesting topics such as her teaching philosophy, how she stayed productive during the pandemic, what working in film recording and session work is like, what are the differences between American and European bassoon playing styles and more.
2016 GRAMMY® Award nominee Judith Farmer’s playing has been described by critics as “impeccable” (American Record Guide), "masterly" (Fanfare Magazine), “absolutely superb”(Classical CD Reviews) and "brilliant" (Kronenzeitung, Austria).
Judith is currently a member of the Los Angeles Opera Orchestra, the Pasadena Symphony and the Long Beach Symphony. She has played on the scores of over 200 major motion pictures, such as Frozen, The Pirates of the Caribbean, Toy Story 2, Spiderman 3, Indiana Jones IV, Star Wars VII and A. I., Men in Black III and many more.
She teaches bassoon at the University of Southern California and held guest master classes at numerous American universities. She received her education at Indiana University and at the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna.
Judith is an avid chamber musician, who enjoys collaborating with composers on new works and has had numerous works written and dedicated to her. Together with her husband, composer Gernot Wolfgang, she co-produced four CDs of his chamber music for Albany Records, including Passing Through for which she received a 2016 GRAMMY® nomination in the category Best Classical Compendium.
Her latest release, “Judith Farmer plays Favorites” is available on Spotify:
Opening music: "Low Agenda" by Gernot Wolfgang for bassoon & contrabass
Season 3 Episode 2: Martin Kuuskmann
Martin Kuuskmann is a multiple Grammy-nominated Estonian-born bassoon virtuoso, Moosmann artist, and the Professor of Bassoon and Chamber Music at the University of Denver. A graduate of the Manhattan School of Music and the Yale School of Music, his mentors include Stephen Maxym, Frank Morelli, Rufus Olivier and Ilmar Aasmets.
On this episode, we talk about his recent and upcoming projects, some of his favourite musicians and collaborators, his partnership with Moosmann bassoons, and some of the lessons he learnt in his career.
To find out more about him, please visit: http://kuuskmann.com
Season 3 Episode 1: Alban Wesly
Welcome back to a brand new season of LOR.
In this episode (recorded in summer 2020) I interview Alban Wesly, a musician based in Amsterdam. He is proud to be the bassoonist/founding member of Calefax (Amsterdam) and to have been the bassoonist of Ensemble Musikfabrik (Cologne) for 22 years. Since September 2018 Alban teaches bassoon at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague.
As the bassoonist of the award winning reed quintet Calefax and the internationally acclaimed Ensemble Musikfabrik Alban is considered as one of the most versatile bassoonists of this time. Calefax is one of the longest operating chamber music groups in the Netherlands, and worldwide trendsetter for a new genre: the Reed Quintet.
We talk about interesting topics such as touring, his interest in new music, tips on maintaining a chamber ensemble, making programming choices, and a funny travel anecdote of the "airline baggage crisis" in Aberdeen and much more.
To find out more about Alban, visit:
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Season 2 Episode 9: Joost Flach
Joost Flach’s long and fruitful musical journey as an oboist began in the Netherlands. During 1984, following the completion of his studies, he began a global search for work opportunities. This planted his migration and current residency to Singapore. Over the years this initial venture has blossomed, and developed into many opportunities throughout South-East Asia.
He has been a regular member (namely as Sub-Principal Oboist) of the Malaysian Philharmonic, The Singapore Symphony Orchestra and Bangkok Symphony Orchestra. Since his retirement from the Malaysian Philharmonic in 2014, Joost has become more involved with teaching and education.
Connecting with Asian composers has evolved into the commissioning of several chamber music works that feature the oboe, and other works for wind ensembles. His multitude of skills as a performer, teacher and composer has also developed into the conducting of many wind ensembles. Through these experiences, he has witnessed enormous expansions within the Southeast-Asia music scene. Joost has also worked for the Ministry of Education in both Singapore and the Netherlands, and is currently Head of Winds at NAFA School of Music.
Season 2 Episode 8: Roger Birnstingl interviewed by Ole K. Dahl
This episode is kindly contributed by Ole K. Dahl.
Ole interviewed his former teacher and mentor, Prof. Roger Birnstingl, during the polish bassoon festival Pracownia fagocisty 2020, thank you to our guest contributor and the festival director Arek Adamczyk for releasing this interview to our listeners!
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Season 2 Episode 7: Jaroslaw Augustyniak
Jaroslaw Augustyniak was born in Lodz, Poland in 1965. In 1988 he graduated with distinction from the Academy of Music in Łódź, Poland with a master’s degree in Bassoon and Chamber Music. A year later he was a laureate in several prestigious competitions and then Jarek furthered his studies under the guidance of Vincenzo Menghini - RAI Turin.
Jarek was appointed as Principal Bassoon of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales in December 2004. He joined BBC National Orchestra of Wales after a thirteen-year post as Principal Bassoon with the Basque National Orchestra, Spain.
His professional life has seen him to move from Poland, through Portugal, Spain and Denmark to the United Kingdom. He has been given the opportunity to play in almost all European countries and as far afield as the USA, Argentina, Chile and China - in many prestigious venues including Wien Konzerthaus, London Royal Albert Hall, Berlin Konzerthaus, Amsterdam Concertgebouw under many famous conductors. In addition, Jarek has fostered an active solo career,
He recorded soundtrack solo bassoon for the Anri Sala film “1395 Days Without Red” – followed by a solo appearance in Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris. During his career Jarek has been a guest principal in many festivals and orchestras like the London Symphony Orchestra and the BBC Philharmonic.
We speak about how he is coping with the Covid-19 lockdown, the opportunities that the pandemic could bring, the origins of his online lecture series "Ventus Optimus", his collaboration with contemporary composer Julia Plaut involving a vacuum cleaner, how his wide travels and close family life influenced his artistic life and the intricacies of playing in a film soundtrack.
To find out more about him, visit: https://www.jaroslawaugustyniak.com/
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