Paula Robison is still a flutist, but she has been stepping out of the flute-envelope recently, and doing something she has always wanted to do: the Sprechstimme part of Pierrot Lunaire. Here's a link to a performance she gave of it last year with a superb chamber ensemble, and information about an upcoming performance in New York on December 2 of this year.
I applaud Paula's courage. It does take a huge amount of chutzpah to face an audience without an instrument as your "mask," but it is, at least in this case, balanced by the incredible joy involved in taking the plunge (and the risk). Perhaps playing a character, and speak-acting in German with the cushion of supportive and sensitive instrumentalists, softens the blow, but it is still a huge and joyous leap into madness for everyone.
Hmm. Perhaps this might start a trend. Performances of Pierrot Lunaire by a whole ensembles of former flutists, or flutists who double. I'll play the violin and viola part!
[The image above is actually Pulcinella, as drawn by Maurice Sand, but he's wearing a costume typical of what people wear to play Pierrot!]