ASHLEY SOLOMON, traversiere e flauti dolci
Professor Ashley Solomon is Chair and Head of Historical Performance at the RCM and performs internationally as the director, baroque flautist and recorder soloist with Florilegium.
Much in demand as a teacher he has been a professor at the RCM since 1994, appointed the first Head of Historical Performance in 2006 and awarded a personal chair in 2014. He has been instrumental in establishing a fully integrated Masters programme in HP as well as developing an international profile for his students through numerous successful collaborations. These include projects with the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles, the Salzburg Mozarteum and further afield in Australia, Bolivia, North America, Italy and France and has been director of the RCM baroque orchestra since 2006. He has given masterclasses and lectures worldwide, including The Juilliard School, Yale University, Case Western Reserve, Sydney Conservatorium, Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts Singapore, Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, Oslo and Bergen Conservatories, Frankfurt Hochschule and at the Salzburg Mozarteum.
Combining a successful career across both theory and practice, Ashley co-founded the UK-based baroque ensemble Florilegium in 1991 and, since 2001, has been its Director. They have a busy touring schedule and each year perform at major international festivals throughout Europe as well as the Americas. Florilegium have been recording with Channel Classics since 1993 and have made 35 recordings, many of which have garnered international awards. They have given over 1,200 performances over the years, 77 of these have been at London’s Wigmore Hall.
Since 2008 Florilegium have been Ensemble in Association at RCM working with both period and modern instrumentalists on chamber music from the 17th and 18th centuries.
As a soloist, he has performed worldwide, including concertos in the Sydney Opera House, Esplanade (Singapore), Teatro Colon (Buenos Aires), Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Konzerthaus (Vienna), Beethoven-Haus (Bonn), Handel-Haus (Halle) and Frick Collection (New York). He also records as a solo artist with Channel Classics and his recording of the complete Bach’s Flute Sonatas with Terence Charlston was voted the best overall version of these works on either modern or period flute by Gramophone Magazine (February 2017):
“Solomon’s luminous tone and unfussy command of the complicated melodies conflate into something utterly beautiful. Slow movements are soulful in their infinite variety, fast ones are clever and with a wealth of invention behind them.”
As director and founder of Arakaendar Bolivia Ashley has been working with Bolivian musicians since 2002 to promote music held in the archives of the Moxos and Chiquitos Indians in the Amazonian jungle. Their numerous recording and editions of this repertoire has made a major impact on the understanding of the social and political influence music had in the Jesuit Missions in the 17th and 18th centuries. In 2008 Ashley was the first European to receive the prestigious Bolivian Hans Roth Prize, given to him in recognition of the enormous assistance he has given to the Bolivian native Indians, their presence on the international stage and the promotion and preservation of this music.
In recent years Ashley and students from Historical Performance have enjoyed a fruitful relationship with the Royal Collection Trust supporting the exhibitions in the Queens Gallery by providing up to 10 concerts each year. Last year he was invited to curate a series of concerts to support the Charles II Exhibition Art and Power and this included performances at Windsor Castle, the Queen’s Chapel and the Queen’s Gallery.
Ashley feels honoured to have been granted permission to perform on a unique porcelain flute made by the Meissen factory in 1760 and once owned by King George III. This remarkable instrument can be heard on his solo recording of Telemann’s Fantasias for flute as well as in a short film about the instrument commissioned by the RCT from Kew Palace.