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Rodney Waterman is a performer, teacher and composer who specialises in the recorder. He studied with Kees Boeke in Italy and Holland in the mid-1980s. His repertoire is eclectic, including early, folk and contemporary and Brazilian music, with a particular interest in improvised music. He has performed and tutored widely in Australia and New Zealand including numerous major Festivals.
In January 2000 Rodney performed and tutored at the Australian Call of the Four Winds Festival in Armidale NSW. In January 2002 he was a guest tutor and performer at the New Zealand Winds of Waitaha Festival. In January 2005 Rodney performed and tutored at the International Steps In Time Festival of Recorder and Dance in Armidale NSW. Rodney was the director of the Festival Children's Summer Activity Program.
In 1984 in Italy he taught music at the scuole elementari di Pitigliano (Pitigliano Primary School). In Melbourne, from 1997 until May 2004, he taught ensemble and classroom music at Fitzroy North Primary School. He was the Music Co-ordinator at Preston Girls Secondary College in Melbourne from 2004-7. Since 2008 Rodney has taught music at Preshil in Kew, Melbourne. He has also been a long term activist in the environment movement.
Rodney is particularly interested in exploring through improvisation, the intrinsic and fundamental beauty of the essentially simple 'woody' tonal qualities of the recorder, ultimately aiming to discover more of the soul and the spirit of the instrument. This has led to collaborations with Ben Robertson (double bass), Doug De Vries (guitar), Joe Chindamo (piano), Tony Lewis (percussion) and shakuhachi master, Riley Lee. A number of Rodney's recorder compositions, such a Leviathan (1987) are inspired by the shakuhachi. His recorder playing also featured on the soundtrack of the television movie Witch Hunt (Columbia, Golden Square Pictures) released in the USA and Australia in 1999. In 1997/98 Rodney had the privilege of working for the late Fred Morgan in Daylesford, Victoria. He worked two days a week testing new recorders.
In 1998 Rodney released an innovative CD (Agua e Vinho - Orpheus Music OM201) of Brazilian contemporary music (Gismonti, Pascoal), folk and original music, with Melbourne jazz guitarist Doug De Vries. They appeared at the Port Fairy Folk Festival in March 1999. A new and expanded version (4 bonus tracks, 18 mins extra music, new artwork) of ┴gua e Vinho was released (11/2000) on Egberto Gismonti's Carmo/ECM label (CARMO/14). The CD is distributed and marketed worldwide by ECM records Munich.
In January 2007 Rodney presented a tribute performance to Australian jazz recorder player and multi-instrumentalist Ade Monsbourgh with Michael McQuaide's Late Hour Boys at the Eltham Jazz Festival. At the 2008 Festival he performed with Australian jazz pianist, Joe Chindamo. In the 2009 Festival Rodney again performed Ade Monsbourgh's recorder and ragtime repertoire, this time with Stephen Grant (piano), Mark Elton (tuba), John Scurry (banjo) and Ian Smith (washboard and trumpet). Rodney and Doug de Vries also performed a 10th anniversary tribute to their ┴gua e Vinho CD at the same Festival, and earlier (Nov 2008) at the B˘ite World Music Cafe.
Rodney plays recorder (alto and voice flute) on Australian singer/songwriter Robbie Grieg's album Songman in India launched at Montsalvat, Eltham on September 6, 2009. Visit Robbie's MySpace site and listen to his Songman in India sampler. More recently, Rodney appears on the late singer/songwriter John Rasmussen's posthumously released double CD, October Moon, launched at Montsalvat on 28/3/10 on recorder and backing vocals. Click HERE to purchase online.
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