The Florida Pro Musica Chamber Ensemble performs Baroque chamber music for violin, cello and harpsichord. Judson Griffin, Javier Caballero and Larry Kent have played together since the early years of FPM, often in collaboration with members of The Dance Project, a Tampa-based professional dance company specializing in 18th century dance. The trio has frequently been joined by outstanding vocal soloists such as Meghan Alfaro, Maggie Coleman, and Joyce Liu. Here is a brief music sample from a video that the ensemble recorded with The Dance Project. Photo by Meshekoff. Additional audio on the Audio & Video page.
This season's FPM Chamber Ensemble program will feature works from Vivaldi's Venice. The performance at Sacred Heart is tentatively scheduled for Sunday, January 27, 2013 at 4:00 p.m. Tickets are not yet on sale, but will be available online or at the door. Please check back soon.
Violinist Judson Griffin appears in New York as concertmaster of Concert Royal, Amor Artis, Sinfonia New York, and the American Classical Orchestra, among others. He has been guest soloist and concertmaster with the Dallas Bach Society and New Trinity Baroque in Atlanta. He was associated with the Connecticut Early Music Festival for many years as concertmaster, soloist, conductor, and for six years as Music Director. He has performed with Florida Pro Musica since the group's inception in 1998, as concertmaster of the chamber orchestra and in a variety of chamber music concerts. He is Music Advisor to the Foundation for Baroque Music in Saratoga Springs, NY, where he plays chamber music in July, and provides repertoire research, programming, and personnel advice to numerous organizations. He has been a principal player with Helicon, the Boston Early Music Festival Orchestra, the Smithsonian Chamber Orchestra, and Apollo's Fire of Cleveland; and concertmaster of the Philadelphia Classical Orchestra. Mr. Griffin led period-instrument orchestras for dance performances at the Maggio musicale in Florence, in opera at Musica nel chiostro in Italy, and led the Lobkowitz Quartet in performances of Haydn's Seven Last Words in Germany. He has toured with the English Concert and Trevor Pinnock; played with the Akademie der alten Musik in Berlin; with Il complesso barocco in Innsbruck, Milan, and Venice; and has been a soloist at the Festival de Clisson, France. Solo recitals have been given in Boston, Detroit, Washington, D.C., in New York at Weill Recital Hall and Merkin Hall, and in Alaska. Mr. Griffin is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music and earned a doctorate at The Juilliard School. He plays a baroque violin by Gio. Paolo Maggini, Brescia, ca. 1610-1620, a classical violin by Claude Pierray, Paris, 1707, and an anonymous northern Italian modern violin from ca. 1760.
Mr. Griffin's more than 80 recordings include new music from the mid-1970s to early 1980s; quartets of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven on period instruments with the Smithson String Quartet, of which he was a member for 10 years; the Schubert Octet with the European ensemble Atlantis; recordings with Philharmonia of San Francisco and Tafelmusik of Toronto, among others; works of Richard Strauss, Elgar, and Barber with the Smithsonian Chamber Orchestra on modern instruments strung in gut; and the Mozart Requiem and Haydn Creation as concertmaster of Amor Artis, all on period instruments.
Cellist Javier Caballero, born in Puerto Rico, received his Master's Degree and Graduate Performance Diploma as a student of Rhonda Rider at the Boston Conservatory, where he won the 2005 String Department Honors Competition. Previously, he received his Bachelor's Degree from the University of South Florida under Scott Kluksdahl. While in Tampa, he began playing baroque chamber music with Florida Pro Musica, in concerts and in a video on 18th century dance in collaboration with The Dance Project. A frequent freelancer, performances have taken Mr. Caballero from Boston's Museum of Fine Arts, Symphony Hall and Jordan Hall to clubs such as Ryles Jazz Club, Lizard Lounge and Makor in NYC. He has recorded with the Balmus Ensemble, the Tami Machnai Ensemble, the Tim Janis Ensemble, and with several Boston-area singers and indie rock bands. He has also performed with Diana Ross and the Supremes, Sarah Brightman, Mannheim Steamroller, and the Irish Tenors. He served as principal cellist of Tampa's Mostly Pops Orchestra and is currently principal of the Worcester Collegium. Mr. Caballero has toured China and was featured on PBS and QVC. In December 2008, he was invited to take part in a two-week concert tour in Palestine and Israel as part of the Baroque Festival organized by the Al Kamandjati Music Center. In addition to performing in the Boston area and beyond, Mr. Caballero teaches strings for the Brookline Public Schools as well as privately.
Larry Kent is Music Director of Florida Pro Musica, in addition to maintaining a busy schedule as a harpsichordist and pianist in solo and chamber settings. He made his European conducting debut in a rare performance of Gazzaniga's Don Giovanni at Teatro Signorelli in Cortona, Italy, in 1996, and his Asian debut in the Peoples Republic of China conducting symphonies of Brahms and Mozart with the Xian Symphony Orchestra in 1998. Also an accomplished composer, Kent's choral and instrumental works have received numerous performances on both sides of the Atlantic. While completing his doctoral studies he conducted two critically acclaimed performances of his one-act opera, Charlotte, which he composed to an original libretto by the late John Lawson, Jr., a noted Tampa attorney and wordsmith. Since co-founding Florida Pro Musica in 1998 with attorney George F. Gramling, III, he continues to explore both familiar and unfamiliar literature for chorus, chamber orchestra, and smaller ensembles.
Mr. Kent holds degrees in piano performance from Virginia Commonwealth University, where he studied piano with Carl Pfeifer and harpsichord with Lawrence Robinson, and from the University of Miami, where he was a student of Ivan Davis. He earned his doctorate from the University of South Carolina, where he studied composition with Dick Goodwin and conducting with Donald Portnoy and Manuel Alvarez. He has participated in master classes and workshops with Peter Phillips, Stephen Paulus and Libby Larsen, and was an original member of the Virginia Consort in Charlottesville, Virginia. He has also served as a Choral Scholar at Church of the Good Shepherd in Columbia, South Carolina, and sings and directs Florida Pro Musica's annual Advent concerts of Gregorian Chant at Sacred Heart Church in Tampa. He was recently elected as a Fellow of the Academy of St. Cecilia, a London-based social and learned society dedicated to the study and performance of early music.