Coming events. See Fred Palmer’s column in this issue for information about MPRO’s upcoming rehearsals, December 8 holiday concert, and February 9, 2019 workshop with Frances Blaker.  Other events of interest to early music lovers include:  

American Recorder Rally (September 8 in San Jose) including a two-hour workshop and concert with recorder virtuoso and composer Matthias Maute. The recorder rally is part of the 2018-2019 Foothill Community Concert series. Information on the workshop and all of the concerts is available at. .

The San Francisco Early Music Society (SFEMS) 2018-2019 concert series will include performances by Ensemble Caprice with Matthias Maute, and Antic Faces, a new West Coast Renaissance band.  See

Dues are due.  Returning MPRO members should print and fill out the membership form available on our website, Bring it with your check to give to Membership Chair Chris Flake at a rehearsal, or mail the form and check to Chris at the address on last season’s membership list.  The form should include any changes in your contact information or your list of preferred instruments.  Note that the list is for instruments that you would be willing to play at a concert, not all of the instruments you play.  Our directors use these preference lists to assign parts.

New members (including associate and student members) are always welcome. Prospective new members are encouraged to bring their instruments (and music stands) to rehearsals as guests before deciding whether to join. See the “Frequently Asked Questions” section under the “Joining MPRO” link on our website for more information. - Judith Unsicker



Dear members of the Mid-Peninsula Recorder Orchestra,


Welcome to MPRO’s fifty-sixth season.  Music for the orchestra’s holiday concert, which is scheduled for 2:00 P.M. on Saturday, December 8, at Grace Lutheran Church in Palo Alto, will include a medieval motet from the Montpellier Codex, a lively French renaissance chanson by Clément Janequin and a hauntingly beautiful movement in the impressionist style from a Ballade by Charles Koechlin, a fascinating composer whose works deserve greater recognition.   We will also be repeating two selections from last season; the Sonatina by Schmelzer and the Handel Concerto Grosso Op. 6, No. 1.  I am also pleased to let you know that Greta Haug-Hryciw will be directing the first meeting of the upcoming season on September 12 and that Irene Beardsley will be joining the orchestra again to share her keyboard skills with us at the orchestra’s upcoming performances.

On February 9 of next year the orchestra will be presenting a workshop directed by Frances Blaker at Grace Lutheran Church in Palo Alto.  Frances Blaker is an internationally recognized performer and music director and one of the Bay Area’s favorite workshop leaders, and I encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity to work with her and experience an informative and enjoyable day of music making.   Further details regarding this workshop will appear in upcoming issues of Upbeat.  Also, MPRO holds its regular meetings in Angus Hall at Trinity Church, 330 Ravenswood Ave (at the corner of Laurel) in Menlo Park.  Please remember to bring a music stand to these meetings since none will be available at Angus Hall and plan to arrive early to allow for parking and getting from your car to the meeting room.              

        Listed below is the music for the first three meetings of the orchestra.  Music can be purchased at these meetings for those who did not download and print it from the PDF files sent to the orchestra’s membership.  Those returning from last season can use the music they already have for the Schmelzer Sonatina and Handel Concerto Grosso. Please note that great bass and contrabass recorders as well as bass viola da gamba will be needed at all three meetings and that sopranino recorder and krummhorns are called for on September 26.  Finally, everyone is asked to practice and become familiar with the scheduled music, particularly the new selections, before the first meeting in September.  

September 12

Anonymous:  O Maria, virgo davitica/O maria, maris stella/ Veritatem

Handel:  Concerto Grosso Op. 6, No. 1

September 26

Schmelzer:  Sonatina

Janequin:  Il estoit une fillette

Handel:  Concerto Grosso Op. 6, No. 1

Koechlin:  Assez lent

October 10

Anonymous:  O Maria, virgo davitica/O maria, maris stella/ Veritatem

Koechlin:  Assez lent

Schmelzer:  Sonatina

Handel:  Concerto Grosso Op. 6, No. 1

        I look forward to working with you again in September and encourage you to let any of your friends who play early instruments know about the orchestra's activities this season and invite them to attend our upcoming meetings, workshop and concerts.  - Sincerely,  Fred Palmer   


Following are links to online recordings of the three new pieces that MPRO will

begin rehearsing in September.


Janequin, Il estoit une fillette:  (This piece was published by Susato as Ronde VII.)  For French and English lyrics see:

O Maria virgo davitica:

Koechlin,  Assez lent, Opus 50, as a piano solo:


A recent scientific study used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology and a variety of visual and auditory stimuli to compare brain activity in young Nile crocodiles to activity observed in earlier studies of birds and mammals. Auditory stimuli ranged from simple (chord “noises”) to complex (Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 4). The crocodiles showed greater brain responses, and responses in different parts of the brain, with the music.  For more information on the study, see:  This is a recording of the Bach concerto with flute parts played on recorders:


The Board: President: Judith Unsicker; Treasurers: Chantal Moser and Mary Ashley; Recording Secretary: vacant; Membership: Chris Flake; Publicity: vacant; Graphics: Mary Ashley; Newsletter Editor: vacant; Workshop Coordinator: vacant; Hospitality: vacant; Music Sales: Laura Gonsalves; Historian: vacant; Webmaster: Dan Chernikoff;  Music Director: Fred Palmer; Assistant Music Director: Greta Haug-Hryciw.  MPRO website:      

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