-flautista, recorder player, flute a bec, block flute, flauto diritto-

Talk about Horacio Franco necessarily involves talking about one of the most successful and recognised Mexican musicians and artists around the globe.

Owner of a vast repertoire that ranges from medieval, Renaissance and Baroque to contemporary works (most of them written specially for him by composers from around the world). He has broken the stereotype of the traditional classical musician and has been acclaimed by the international critics like one the worthiest representatives of his instrument at world-wide level.

He studied in the National Conservatoire in Mexico to finish later “Cum Laude” at the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam, Holland, with Marijke Miessen and Walter Van Hauwe.

As a very active performer, he plays very often with several ensembles and he is a frequent soloist with virtually every Mexican orchestra; Horacio Franco also appears with distinguished ensembles around the globe, among them we can mention: the outstanding debut in 1994 in Carnegie Hall with the American Composers Orchestra, The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, San Francisco’s Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Berliner Symphoniker, Irish Chamber Orchestra, Kibbutzim Chamber Orchestra, Accademia della Magnifica Comunitá, Orchestra da Camera Florentina, Hungary’s Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra and Tokyo Solisten. Of special note is Horacio's record of appearances over seven consecutive seasons with the famous orchestra Academy of St. Martin in the Fields.

He has edited more than 22 CDs, in which he performs as either soloist, with ensemble or conductor. Franco has, to date, performed the world premieres of over 50 works and has travelled by Europe, India, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, China, Morocco, Egypt, Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, The United States, South America and Israel given numerous skilful classes; in England and the United States he has participated in projects of education, as well as in projects of support to marginal and unprotected sectors of the society.

Franco was also founder and director of the vocal and instrumental ensemble "Cappella Cervantina" in 1993 which enjoys an enormous acceptance in Mexico by its extraordinary quality. With this group numerous tours of concerts in Mexico and several cities of the United States and Europe were done, in one of these concerts he appeared in 1997 conducting The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields in London, England. Heading this ensemble he offered numerous concerts in all Mexico in the most important Festivals and abroad they have appeared in Chicago, France (“Festival Les Chemines du Baroque”), Spain (Expo Zaragoza), Lithuania (Coral Festival), and in several places of the Great Britain.

Franco continually creates new forms to present the audience new multiple resources of his instrument, in this field we can mention two main projects: “Del Medioevo al Danzón (From the Middle Ages to the Danzón)” and “De Bach a los Beatles (From Bach to the Beatles, both available in CD)”, so as a consequence of this the commonly vision that is held of the Recorder as a death and limited instrument has turned out to be a brilliant and full of possibilities one. Franco has appeared in radio and television and has obtained several grants and recognitions.

Some of the batons under which he’s played are those of Alexander Polianitchko, Alfred Savia, Arthur Fagen, Christopher Wilkins, Dennis Russel Davies, Diane Wittry, Eduardo Mata, Gabriel Chmura, Istvan Párkányi, Janos Rola, Jean Marie Zeitouni, Johan Jonsson, John Toll, Matthew Savery, Mordechai Rechtmann, Nicholas Mc'Gegan, Ronald Zollman, Ton Koopman among others.

Currently Horacio finds himself discovering new horizons since he’s working on Jazz projects and also keeps an intensive activity giving recitals, school concerts, lectures and master classes.

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“Mexico Extreme” is a program where Horacio Franco, -one of the most representative and active Mexican artists in the avant-garde of classical music-, celebrates Mexico with a program proclaiming his instrument -the recorder-, as an independent instrument from all the stereotypes given to it, both as a school and amateur instrument only suitable for certain types of music (baroque and renaissance), converting it into a revolutionary instrument, able to perform diverse languages, from its traditional and idiomatic baroque sound as an historical instrument, Franco plays and conducts at the same time as in the 16th century.

Franco’s performing art gives the music a contemporary sound because of its brightness and colors at the stage, just as Mexico’s landscape and its cheerful people, playing Vivaldi, Telemann and also his celebrated baroque arrangement form music originally written for other instruments, as Johann Sebastian Bach’s Concert for recorder and orchestra. Franco takes the recorder in this program to its extreme limits, both its technical and expressive possibilities.

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