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Il Dolcimelo (Instrumental Early Music Ensemble)

Founded: 1994 - Italy

Aurelio Virgiliano, a 16th century Italian musician, is only known today for his collection of virtuosic music pieces and technical instructions to which he gave the ambiguous title “Il Dolcimelo”, which means both ‘sweet apple tree’ and ‘sweet melody’.

Il Dolcimelo is a professional ensemble for early music formed in 1994 by recorder player Katja Beisch and baroque cellist Doris Runge. Since its conception it has achieved international respect. In 1997 they placed in the final round at the international competition for chamber music in Rovetoro/Italy, and received first prize in April 2000 at the international competition “Biagio Marini” for early music in Neuburg (by the Danube river). The Hessen Radio produced several recordings with them, and in 1997 they released their first CD “Affetuoso” with Italian music of the early and high Baroque era, which was praised by the press due to its spontaneous and extroverted interpretations. In December 2000 came the second CD “For several friends” with English music from the 17th century. Collaborating with others has given way to a flexible group of musicians, that as a duo, trio, or even a small orchestra can perform music from the 17th and 18th centuries on historical instruments.

Il Dolcimelo is not interested in a museum-like reconstruction of music from long-distant epochs, they are more concerned about the presentation of recent aspects and findings of Baroque music. In the music itself, in which the divisions between serious and more entertaining aspects were much more flexible than today, leaves much room for experimentation and interpretative ideas. This is combined with the temperament, joy and spontaneity that Il Dolcimelo puts across when playing.

Katja Beisch (recorder) initially studied musical education with a major in recorder with Ursula Schmidt-Laukamp at the Musikhochschule Köln. She then went on to study a performance diploma with Prof. Günther Höller, where she finished her exam with excellence, and subsequently completed her Konzertexamen. Further studies were under Han Tol at the Conservatory of Rotterdam (Netherlands) and with Pedro Memelsdorff at the Civica Scuola di Musica in Milan (Italy). She also participated in several masterclasses, amongst others with Walter van Hauwe. She has been engaged for concerts and CD productions with ensembles for early music, such as with the Collegium Cartusianum under the direction of Peter Neumann. In 1999 she won the 2nd prize at the international competition for solo recorder in London.

Doris Runge (baroque cello) began her cello studies with Prof. Claus Kannengieser at the Musikhochschule Köln and continued with Michael Kasper. The legendary Amadeus Quartet awakened her love and preference for chamber music. Upon completion of her artists diploma, she studied baroque cello at the Academy of early music in Bremen with Jaap ter Linden. She participated in several master-classes, including Anner Bylsma, Ralph Kirshbaum, Miclos Pereny and chamber music courses with Walter van Hauwe. She received engagements for concerts with ensembles such as Das Neue Orchester under Christoph Spering, Ensemble Sanssoucis Hamburg and the Academy for early music Berlin.

Christoph Lehmann (harpsichord) studied church music in Berlin. After the A-exam he studied organ in Köln, where he also began to delve into the study of the harpsichord under the direction of Professor Hugo Ruf. Prof. Ruf inspired him also to study early music, a passion, which was increased by courses with Tagliavini, Anton Heiller, Kennerth Gilbert, and Gustav Leonhardt. For several years he was a cantor in Düsseldorf, before deciding in 1984 to become a freelance musician. Since that time he is above all active as a continuo player in various ensembles for early music, including La Stravaganza Köln, Ensemble Movimento and Das Kleine Konzert. As well, he has been involved in publishing materials for the Church, and has written software for them and others.

Thomas C. Boysen (lute) was born in Norway and studied guitar and lute at the Conservatory for music in Oslo. In order to master his abilities on the lute, he moved to Germany to begin an artistic study at the Institute for early music in Trossingen with Professor Rolf Lislevand. Master-classes with Hopkinson Smith were of benefit to his artistic maturity. Besides concerts with Rolf Lislevand and Lorenz Duftschmid he performed in concerts with Pro Musica Antigua Oslo, Ensemble Tientos Vienna and Ensemble Labyrinto under the direction of Paolo Pandolfo.

Marie Verweyen (baroque violin) is a freelance Baroque violinist since 1994. She studied standard violin under Ida Bieler and obtained experience in orchestras such as the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie and the Academy orchestra of the Schleswig-Holstein Festival. She subsequently studied with Lucy van Dael (Amsterdam) and visited courses by Sigiswald Kuijken, John Holloway and Reinhard Goebel. A prime focus of her work is chamber music, in which she performs regularly with ensembles like Concert Royal (Köln) Ensemble Leonarda (Frankfurt), where she frequently performs as a soloist. She developed playing experience with baroque orchestras like La Stagione Frankfurt, Ensemble for early music Dresden, the Freiburg baroque orchestra as well as the Baroque orchestra Stuttgart.

Laurence Dean (Traverse flute) studied modern flute at the University of Manchester, traverse flute and historical performance at the Academy for early music in Bremen under Wilbert Hazelzet, and subsequently with Barthold Kuijken in the Hague. In 1986 he was one of the founders of the ensemble Recreations Musicales, in which he concertized at several early music festivals in Germany and Europe, and also was recorded by NDR, Radio Bremen, Südfunk and Radio Hilversum. He has been a soloist in several orchestras and chamber ensembles, such as Fiori musicali (Bremen), Hamburg baroque Orchestra and La Stravaganza Köln. Since 1992 he has been a flute instructor at the Folkwang conservatory in Essen.

Source: Marilyn Gilbert Artists Management Website, English translation by Aryeh Oron (April 2004)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (April 2004)

Recordings of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works




Wolfgang Kläsener


BWV 180

Links to other Sites

MGAM - Il Dolcimelo

Il Dolcimelo (Official Website) [English/German]

Biographies of Performers: Main Page | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Explanation | Acronyms | Missing Biographies | The Sad Corner


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Last update: Monday, May 29, 2017 03:17