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Flauguissimo Ensemble

  • The Ascension Church, Timbercroft Lane London, England, SE18 2SG United Kingdom (map)

Flauguissimo Ensemble

Yu-Wei Hu (baroque flute) 
Boris Bizjak (baroque flute) 
Johan Löfving (baroque guitar and theorbo)
Masumi Yamamoto (harpsichord)

Marin Marais (1656-1728) - Pieces en trio: Suite in G Minor
Girolamo Kapsberger (1580-1651) - Canario  
François Couperin (1668-1733) - La François from Les Nations 
Jean-Marie Leclair (1697-1764) - Deuxième Récréation de musique

For the last decade, Flauguissimo has dazzled audiences across UK and beyond, performing at many prestigious venues including Kings Place and Cadogan Hall in London, Sage Gateshead in Newcastle and St George’s Bristol. Recent festival highlights include those in Stratford-on-Avon, Kings Lynn and Deal as well as London Guitar Festival, Utrecht Early Music Festival Fringe and Brighton Early Music Festival. This ensemble featuring Yu-Wei Hu and Boris Bizjak on flutes accompanied by Masumi Yamamoto (harpsichord) and Johan Löfving (theorbo/guitar) made their debut in the ‘Sydenham Concerts’ Series and have several upcoming concerts in London. The intimate sound of two flutes has led to a particular interest in the sensuous repertoire of the French baroque.

Yu-Wei Hu (photo credit: Aiga Ozo)

Yu-Wei Hu (photo credit: Aiga Ozo)

Yu-Wei is a professional flautist specialising in historically-informed performance. As both a recitalist and orchestra musician, Yu-Wei has performed baroque and classical flute throughout the UK and Europe. She has performed with many baroque chamber ensembles and orchestras, such as Florilegium, London Handel Orchestra, Hanover Band and International Baroque Players. She performed at the Royal Festival Hall, Royal Albert Hall, Radio France Festival at Montpellier, BBC Proms 2012 at Cadogan Hall, London Festival of Baroque Music, Oxford Early Music Festival, London Handel Festival as well as St Martin-in-the-Fields, St Johns Smith Square and Palace of Versailles in France. Her broadcast presences include BBC Radio 3, Radio France and Austrian Radio Ö1. Yu-Wei has also performed with British harpsichordist Jane Chapman in Grove Forum at the RCM and Arts and Humanities Festival 2011 at Kings College London; their CD The Oriental Miscellany was released under Signum lable in April 2015.

As a chamber musician, Yu-Wei’s baroque group Ensemble de Trianon won Richard III Prize in RCM early music competition 2010They are ensemble in residence in Opera Barga FestivalItaly in 2015. Les Nation Réunies, the other baroque ensemble she co-founded in 2010, is the winner of the International Early Music Competition in Middelburg/The Netherlands 2011. They have been invited to perform in Austrian Radio Ö1 "Alte Musik-Neu Interpretiert" with Bernhard Trebuch, live from the Radiokulturhaus Wien in October 2011. Les Nation Réunies were also invited to perform in in Cobbe Collection at Hatchlands, UK, Vienna Bachwoche Festival and Carinthischer Sommer Festival in Austria.

Yu-Wei performs classical flute with Swedish guitarist Johan Lofving asFlaugiussimoDuo. They performed many duo recitals around UK and Sweden, including Cadogen Hall,Kings Place, Pump Rooms in Bathas well as Brighton Early Music Festival, London Guitar Festival, Kings Lynn Festival, Stratford-on-Avon Festival, Honiton Festival, and Allsköns Musik Festival concert series at Blomskogs Kyrka, Sweden. Flauguissimo Duo's performances were highly appreciated by both audience and music critics.

Yu-Wei studied baroque flute with Lisa Beznosiuk and modern flute with Sue Thomas and Daniel Pailthorpe in Integrated Master of Music programme at the Royal College of Music London, supported by a Kit & John Gander Award 2008-9 and Taiwan Government Scholarship for Studying Abroad 2008-10, Yu-Wei was nominated the McKenna Prize for Baroque Music 2009/2010, and was awarded Master of Music in Advanced Performance with Distinction at the RCM in July 2010.Yu-Wei has taken part in OAE Experience Scheme for Young Players 2011 and Jeune Orchestre Atlantique in France 2011-12.Generously supported by an Parnassus Award, Yu-Wei continued her study of historical flutes with Lisa Beznosiuk and Rachel Brown at the RCM, and was awarded an Artist Diploma degree in 2013.

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Boris Bizjak.jpg

“Bizjak is distinguished by his musicality, captivating performance and modern and ample perception of concert appearance and stage presence.” Marjan Zlobec, Delo

"Boris Bizjak's performance was a triumph. His technique completely transcended the barriers that the instrument puts in the way of a performer." Jure Dobovišek, Dnevnik

Boris regularly performs as a soloist and a chamber musician. In 2016 he was selected by the Slovenian Government to perform a series of concerts in Slovenia, the UK, the USA and Japan to commemorate the 25th Anniversary of Slovenian Independence. His recent performance with British pianist Simon Lane at 62. Ljubljana Festival was publicly and critically acclaimed; one of the reviews described his concert as "extraordinary, filled with unprecedented musical message".

Recent collaboration as a soloist with orchestra includes Slovenian Philharmonic String Ensemble, City of London Chamber Orchestra, London Euphonia Orchestra and Solisti Divini.

His latest CD release in collaboration with flutist Marko Zupan and pianist Yoko Misumi, “Music for two Flutes and Piano” of classical and romantic era, features a world premiere recording of a romantic masterpiece by Johannes Frederik Frohlich - Duet in C minor and a new arrangement (for two flutes and piano) of W. A. Mozart's Sonata for two pianos in D Major K. 448 / 375a.

Boris has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in Slovenia, UK, France, Italy, Germany, Austria, Cyprus, Croatia, Serbia, The Netherlands and China in halls such as the Beijing Concert Hall, Konzerthaus Berlin, Lisinski Concert Hall in Zagreb, Slovenian Philharmonic Hall and Gallus Hall in Cankarjev Dom.

Currently London-based Slovenian flautist Boris Bizjak graduated from the ENMP "Alfred Cortot" in Paris, where he obtained the "Diplôme Supérieur de Concertiste" guided by renowned French flautists Pierre Yves Artaud (CNSMDP) and George Alirol. His teachers were also Fedja Rupel (Academy of Ljubljana), Marzio Conti and Jasenka Jelacic (Ljubljana Conservatoire).

Throughout his studies Boris won number of classical flute competitions - he is a 1st prizewinner of the International Flute Competition in Picardie, France. Three times 1st prizewinner of the Slovenian National Flute Competition and twice prizewinner of the Slovenian National Chamber Music Competition.

Boris was granted a number of concerts as the young Slovenian music artist winner as well as a scholarship for postgraduate studies abroad by the Slovenian Ministry of Culture.

Boris is also recording engineer at Hedone Records and cofounder of Blackheath International Chamber Music Festival.

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Johan Löfving (photo credit: Aiga Ozo)

Johan Löfving (photo credit: Aiga Ozo)

Since being prize winner in the prestigious London International Guitar Competition, Swedish Johan Löfving has established himself as one of the most exciting musicians of a new generation. His performances have taken him to some of the world's finest concert halls such as Wigmore Hall, Kings Place, The Sage Gateshead, Wiener Saal Salzburg and Konzertsaal der Wiener Sängerknaben in Vienna. Additionally, he has appeared in major festivals including Spitalfields, King's Lynn, Stratford-on-Avon, Brighton Early Music Festival, Cambridge Summer Music Festival, Bath Guitar Festival, Saxå Chamber Music Festival, Styriarte Festival Graz and Carinthischer Sommer in Villach, Austria.

He graduated with First Class Honours from the Royal College of Music in London where he studied guitar with Gary Ryan, theorbo with Jakob Lindberg and conducting with Natalia Luis-Bassa. At RCM he was awarded both the Guitar Prize and the Hilda Anderson Dean Prize. Later, he completed his studies with Prof. Robert Wolff at the Mozarteum in Salzburg.

Additionally, in 2011 Johan was awarded the First Prize in the Young Talent Concert at the Uppsala Guitar Festival in Sweden the performance was recorded and broadcasted later by the Swedish Radio P2.

The following year he was honored to receive the Jörgen Rörby Prize from the Swedish Guitar and Lute Society as well as their audience prize.

Since 2009, Johan has been performing regularly with his wife, flautist Yu-Wei Hu as Flauguissimo Duo. They have specialized in the early 19th century repertoire and its exciting blend of spontaneous musical conversations and sublime beauty. The musical experience is heightened by their use of period instruments and Johan is particularly fond of his beautifully ornamented french guitar dating back to 1850.

Apart from his long term work with Flauguissimo Duo, he has worked with some of the finest musicians, such as baritone Thomas Guthrie, tenor Rob Murray, Barokksolistene and pianist David Owen Norris who invited him to take part in the 'Playlist Series' on BBC Radio 4. His passion for new music has resulted in several world premieres of both solo and chamber works, notably by the highly acclaimed British composer and guitarist Sam Cave.

Johan also works regularly with recorder player Fatima Lahham as Improviso, focusing largely on music of the 17th century.

Johan is keen to emphasize the great inspiration he received from his teachers since the very beginning. He started to play at the age of nine at the Music School in Årjäng with Lars Eriksson. From there, he went on to study privately with the distinguished Norwegian Guitar Professor Sven Lundestad and later with Bo Hansson in Stockholm. Later he had the honour to study with legendary Eliot Fisk in Salzburg as part of the Erasmus Exchange Programme.

Johan plays on a guitar made by the Norwegian Luthier Yngvar Thomassen, a theorbo by German Wolfgang Emmerich and a French Tribout guitar from 1850.

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Masumi Yamamoto - Harpsichord

Masumi Yamamoto - Harpsichord

Harpsichordist Masumi Yamamoto was born in Osaka Japan, grew up on Australia's Gold Coast and has been based in the UK since 2001. She has appeared with orchestras including St. James’s Baroque, Yorkshire Baroque Soloists and the International Baroque Players, and at venues such as the Purcell Room, the Royal Albert Hall, St. John's Smith Square and Cadogan Hall. Recent concerts have taken her to France, Germany, Norway and Italy, and she has also performed as far afield as Malaysia, Japan and Australia. Masumi was a prize winner at the prestigious International Harpsichord Competition in Bruges in 2007 and became the first Japanese harpsichordist to reach the finals in 21 years. She was also a semi-finalist in the International Johann Sebastian Bach Competition in Leipzig (2006), and the winner of 2012 Fenton House Keyboard Ensemble Competition with ensemble Akenside Players. A solo recital in London was also given a four-star rating in The Independent in 2012: "her tempi follow the pulse of the heart, and her ornamentation is as natural as breathing".

Masumi graduated with a University Medal from the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University in Brisbane Australia. In the UK, she studied at the Royal Academy of Music, then at Trinity College of Music as a pupil of harpsichordist James Johnstone and was later "The English Concert" Junior Fellow with ensemble Melopoetica.

Masumi is also passionate about the repertoire for two harpsichords and has appeared in concerts across the UK with her duo partner Takako Minami. They will make their debut in Japan later in 2015. Masumi is also active as a soloist, and during the 2014-2015 season, she made concerto appearances with Paulus Barokk in Norway, and London Concertante, Solisti Divini and the Keld Ensemble in the UK.

Now also a keen teacher, Masumi has given lessons and Masterclasses at Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music in Singapore and Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University in Australia, and is Teacher of Harpsichord at St. Paul's Girls' School.

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Later Event: November 25
Music from Lund