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Guest artists / medieval flutes, artistic director

Pierre Hamon

After graduating as an engineer (in physics), Pierre Hamon decided to devote himself to music, which had always been his overriding passion. After teaching himself to play the recorder as a teenager, he followed masterclasses with Frans Brüggen while still a student in Paris and went on to work with Walter Van Hauwe in Amsterdam.

His fascination with medieval music led him to take an interest in other medieval wind instruments, such as the bagpipe, paired flutes, pipe and tabor, and also, naturally, their equivalents in traditional music all over the world. He studied the pipe and tabor with the Catalan Carles Mas and the satara (paired end-blown duct flutes) of Rajasthan with Langa Habib Khan (1998). He also became a disciple of the great Indian master Hariprasad Chaurasia, with whom he studied Hindustani music and the bansuri flute.

In 1980 Pierre Hamon took part in the first tour of the Ensemble Gilles Binchois (direction Dominique Vellard), with which he worked for fifteen years. He was also a member of Les Arts Florissants (William Christie) at the time of that ensemble’s first productions of tragédies lyriques, such as Atys (Lully) and Médée (Charpentier). In 1997 he joined Hespèrion XX(I) and Le Concert des Nations (Jordi Savall) as first flautist. He has taken part in many recordings with those ensembles and others, including Le Poème Harmonique (Vincent Dumestre) and Il Seminario Musicale (Gérard Lesne). He also appears solo, notably in recitals of medieval and contemporary music (Lucente Stella, recorded by Opus 111-Naïve). His vast repertoire ranges from the twelfth to the twenty-first century and includes non-Western music. In 1989, with Brigitte Lesne, Pierre Hamon founded the medieval music ensemble Alla Francesca, of which he is now co-director. With Alla Francesca, devoted to the exploration and interpretation of secular medieval music and famed internationally as one of the finest early music ensembles of today, he has made a dozen or so recordings for the labels Opus 111, Naïve, Virgin Classics, Jade and Zig-Zag Territoires, and given concerts all over the world.

He now teaches at the Lyons Conservatoire and is regularly invited to give seminars or masterclasses at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis and other major teaching institutions specialising in early music.

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