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Pipe Dreams 

Stylish quartet brings the recorder into the 21st century

Thursday, Mar 6 2008
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Four babes in high-heeled boots and tight pants, sporting recorders? That’s the hot-lips-and-fingertips latest in classical music cool. They call themselves the Quartet New Generation, or QNG, and they’ve taken a good part of the world by storm with their bold and saucy approach to an instrument that usually gets relegated to prim and proper early-music realms. The Quartet — Susanne Frohlich, Andrea Guttmann, Hannah Pape and Heide Schwarz — was founded in 1998 at the Amsterdam Conservatoire and the University of the Arts, Berlin, with the goal of making the recorder relevant to modern ears and finding “new possibilities of sound and expression.” Combining classical virtuosity with enticing playfulness, they typically perform on more than 20 recorders of varying sizes and shapes — some bigger than they are — that include everything from accurate reproductions of historic instruments to the modern Patzoldbass. Their appearances have been likened to a kind of “musical revue” that includes traditional and contemporary works as well as dance, visuals and, well, whatever suits them at the moment. This week, courtesy of Chamber Music in Historic Sites, QNG performs works by John Dowling, Hugh Ashton, Chiel Meijering, Petros Ovsepyan and Dorothee Hahne. Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc), 960 E. Third St., dwntwn.; Sat., March 15, 4 p.m.; $35 & $41. (213) 477-2929 or www.dacamera.org. Sat., March 15, 4 p.m., 2008

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