Dido and Aeneas This month we feature the School of Music’s production of Henry Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, which will premiere on Friday August 27th. Our research editor Alex O’Sullivan discusses the history of the work. Page 5
Reviews Julian Hunt reviews Robert Schmidli’s latest Wesley Lunchtime Live concert, while Alex O’Sullivan reviews a couple of recent additions to the School of Music Library shelves. Pages 2 - 4
Research Amy Turnbull makes an analysis of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, discussing the work in terms of its wider social, political, and economic context. Page 8
Inside: Reviews 2 Feature 5 Research 8 Events Guide 10 SoM Ball photos 12
Issue 1 - July 2010
or why we might still want to compose. Marguerite Boland n the preview edition of SOM Times, Liz Collier, Alex O’Sullivan and John Yoon have an amusing discussion about ‘the interface between composer, work, performer and audience’. In their snappy and lively exchange of about twelve sentences each, they touch on almost every perspective that has made its way into thinking about ‘new music’ across the best part of the last century, from the death of the author, notions of ‘authenticity’ and the autonomous art work, to questions of music’s social function, its cultural context and the debilitating dead-end of extreme subjectivity. It’s a witty snippet of dialogue that gives insight into the burden many young (and not so young) composers and performers of new music are saddled with today: how to navigate through the myriad of arguments surrounding the relevance and legitimacy of ‘new music’ and to find a sense of purpose in the writing and performing of music of our time. As Alex O’Sullivan puts is: “So what is the purpose of composition? Why do people compose? Surely there is enough music to last the next thousand years?” The simplest of questions are often the most relevant but can require the most complex of answers. Maybe the best way to contemplate these ques-
tions is to consider some illustrations rather than explanations. American experimental composer Kenneth Gaburo celebrated “The Beauty of Irrelevant Music” in his 1970 essay of that title (reproduced in Writings on Dance [issue 18/19, winter 1999] available in the ANU Music Library). For Gaburo, the more irrelevant the music, the greater the freedom of its creators to establish its context, its purpose, its meaning. I find the concept of ‘Irrelevant Music’ to be a liberating one, in the way that ideas like the ‘slow food movement’ or home water recycling are. It suggests a degree of independence from globalising, commercialising mechanisms where profit and economies of scale provide the sole definition of ‘purpose’ and ‘relevance’. In a town like Canberra, irrelevance is certainly not the most difficult feeling to conjure up, particularly if you’re a relative new-comer to the place and are used to the artistic hussle and bussle of our bigger cities. Turning that freedom of irrelevance into a creative act may seem like a challenge, but if you were keeping an eye on the music calendar in June this year you might have easily thought otherwise. ...continued page 6
Dr. Robert Schmidli in concert, Wesley Lunchtime Live, 28 July
Doctor Robert proves old pops still strong
Julian Hunt n Wednesday 28 July local pianist and endocrinologist Robert Schmidli gave a programme of Mozart and Beethoven as part of the Wesley Lunchtime Live series. Robert Schmidli belongs to a select group of people today, often in the medical profession, who have realised the old ideal of the doctor; liberally educated, culturally refined, cosmopolitan, and indeed, somewhat eccentric. He has accumulated an impressive amount of musical experience, both in New Zealand and Australia and has been a strong supporter of the Wesley Music Foundation, donating his concert proceeds to various causes. The Foundation recently made Robert a Fellow in recognition of his significant contributions. However, to say that this lunchtime performance was good for someone who earns a living in another industry would serve a grave injustice. No, although it may not have been flawless, this was a fine performance without qualification. Dr. Schmidli knows his audience well - alas! I was the youngest by
decades - performing Mozart’s popular Sonata in A Major (KV 331) followed by the somewhat more unusual ‘Les Adieux’ sonata no. 26 (Op. 81a) by Beethoven. It’s an effective way to programme: an old favourite followed by something more innovative (although of course, one usually has in mind the latest Sitsky or Carl Vine rather than Beethoven. It was nonetheless a similar underlying concept). ‘Popular music’ is all the more apt a term, particularly for the Mozart, considering Robert’s familiarity with what most Australians know as popular music ceases with the Beatles. Happily, where he is oblivious to the music played on most hit radio stations, Robert possesses a solid knowledge of and active engagement in art music, particularly of the Classical and Romantic periods. The first thing I noticed as Robert embarked on the Mozart was the clarity and precision of his playing. His experience was attested to by his expertly restrained use of the pedal, so often overused to produce a muddy and frankly nauseating wash of sound by lesser players. The result was a pleasing crispness
Executive Editor: Julian Hunt firstname.lastname@example.org Research Editor: Alexander O’Sullivan email@example.com
which left both the performer’s technical proficiency and the composition’s intricacies exposed; in this case to the merit of both. Although I must admit my appreciation of the rondo alla Turca has taken a significant beating over the years of overperformance in under-prepared recitals, the rest of the audience was visibly excited to hear the third movement begin, and clearly thoroughly enjoyed it. Next, after some introductory words from the performer, was the Beethoven. This, for me at least, was the highlight of the day, particularly the first movement which created an immediate intensity and was delicately executed. The power of the initial shallow chord progressions suggested the piece contained romanticism deeper than Robert gave it credit for in his introductory statements. Still, it was no great surprise to learn after the concert that the good doctor himself favoured the first movement. Yet it appeared a lonely opinion as we discussed the Beethoven in the foyer afterwards; the majority of the passing compliments were for the old favourite, the rondo alla Turca.
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Reviewing some of the SoM Library’s latest additions Leonard Bernstein: West Side Story, Nigel Simeone, Ashgate Publishing, 2009
Alexander O’Sullivan n the preface to this modest volume, Nigel Simeone (of Sheffield University in the United Kingdom) explains that the title is misleading, as West Side Story is perhaps the most collaborative musical-theatrical work ever produced. Throughout his description of its genesis, production and reception, we see that composer Leonard Bernstein, writer Arthur Laurents, choreographer Jerome Robbins and lyricist Stephen Sondheim acted fairly equally in producing what is now considered one of Broadway’s masterworks. The book assumes a non-threatening tone from the beginning. There is no discussion of value, and little in the way of analysis and synthesis of ideas. It was rather frustrating wading through the documentary evidence, without Simeone providing original ideas to tie the information together. However, the evidence itself is first rate, comprising documents from the archives of Bernstein and Sondheim, and many first time interviews with the minor players in the production. The survey begins with a short discussion of Bernstein’s musical career before West Side Story, with special emphasis on the vastly different On the Town and Candide. Both these works are due for some sort of rethink, with Candide in particular perhaps being the candidate for the Great American Operetta. The creative process of the team is then discussed. West Side Story had an unusually long gestation process, with the initial idea floated by Robbins in 1949 (the first production premiered in 1957). Simeone is forced to rely on Bernstein’s production diary for this chapter, which he freely admits may be completely fictitious; simply dreamed up for the Playbill. There are comparisons between early drafts, presented in the form of tables. Simeone spends a chapter discussing the various musical manuscripts still extant, trying to trace their evolution. Early versions of songs are discussed, but offer little insight into Bernstein’s creative process. The synopsis
gives descriptions of aspects of reminiscence and thematic transformation in the score. Theoretical analysis is clearly not Simeone’s forte, as he attempts to discuss concepts of melodic unity in the work. It is well known that much of the music is derived from either the tritone or the combination between major and minor (the best example being the prelude), but Simeone’s discussion beyond these ideas borders on perfunctory. Little discussion is given to the work’s flaws (which have been noted by commentators for decades). Personally, I felt numbers such as “I Feel Pretty” and “Gee, Officer Krupke” jar with the audience, coming as they do after moments of great violence and drama. I also felt that the non-musical setting of Maria’s final monologue always falls flat in the theatre (this scene was originally set to music, now lost). It would have also been nice for Simeone to discuss the derivation of the dance forms, which reference specific Latin styles little known on Broadway at the time. Indeed, perhaps the contribution of a dance scholar would have increased the interest level significantly. The chapter Reception only references contemporary Broadway journalists. While reviews were generally favourable, there were some who found the visual and musical language too challenging for Musical Theatre. Perhaps a look at the continuing influence of the work would have been appropriate, instead of a long discussion of the differences between the show, cast recording and film. Overall, one hundred pages (not including the discography and an extensive bibliography) is far too little to assess the gestation, production and impact of West Side Story. Simeone has tried to please all audiences, and only succeeds in his generality. Those seeking a fresh look at an old favourite will have to wait for another study that fully integrates analysis of the work’s theatrical, musical and choreographic aspects.
News in Musicology
Alexander O’Sullivan he Musicology Seminar is taken by all Musicology majors, as well as approved students from across the College of Arts and Social Sciences. The Seminar investigates music in many forms, often the form of one or several individual research projects on a specific topic. Previous semesters topics have included Indigenous practitioners of Popular Music, Popular Music in general, Musical Analysis, and Music and War. This semester will see the students dive into the recently established field of cultural geography. Cultural Geography is the study of the many cultural aspects found throughout the world and how they relate to the spaces and places where they originate and then travel as people continually move across various areas. Cultural geography seeks to explain and identify human cultural patterns and how those patterns vary across the landscapes of the world. The seminar of thirteen students will investigate music making in Canberra, in a quest to produce a musical map, upon which all the music in the city can be described. Each student has selected a specific scene or location, for instance: choral music, the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, street musicians, church music and the live music scene. The aim of the exercise is to reveal how Canberra as a place is intertwined with the music of its inhabitants, and in turn how its inhabitants define their sense of place through music. The research will be hands-on, consisting primarily of many interviews with ordinary music makers in the community. Even the course coordinator, Dr Ruth Lee Martin, will be conducting her own research into the production of folk music in Canberra.
4 After the Golden Age: Romantic Pianism and Modern Performance, Kenneth Hamilton, Oxford University Press, 2008.
Alexander O’Sullivan enneth Hamilton is a British pianist and scholar, who is famed for his performances of 19th century music. In this delightful survey, he discusses aspects of 19th century piano performance, highlighting the practical and aesthetic differences between that age and our own. His primary thesis is that the ritualistic aspects of the 21st century piano recital are not representative of the ‘great tradition’ of playing from the ‘Golden Age’ of performers, but that they rather developed out of several factors irrelevant to music, such as the advent of recording and the increasing wealth of the middle class. The book draws on contemporary accounts, treatises, early recordings and piano rolls in describing the primary concepts of difference. The first chapters set the scene, introducing the main players (primarily Liszt, Busoni, Paderewski and Thalberg) and describing the typical Romantic Era piano recital. Today, we are far more receptive to recital programmes of long, difficult works such as sonatas and concerti than the average 19th century audience, who demanded fireworks in the forms of virtuosic transcriptions and elaborate, extemporised fantasies. In addition, most recitals also contained chamber music and other diversions (Liszt’s early solo recitals only consisted of two to five solo works). Contemporary accounts relate Liszt asking the audience to suggest themes for his improvisations, which he would then combine contrapuntally. Performers usually saved the more difficult works for a private audience of connoisseurs. It was unknown for a complete performance of a sonata or concerto to be given; indeed Clara Wieck was chastised by critics for programming the Appassionata in its entirety. Even performances
of single movements were very different: performers would often alter the figuration to suit their technique or instrument, and it was not unknown for elaborate codas, or even elaborate, improvised transitional episodes to be employed. It is well known that the majority of 19th century pianists were also reputable composers, and that the public expected to hear new music (or at least new transcriptions) far more frequently than they do today. Hamilton describes how over time, the popular success of certain works led to their immediate embalmment, thus reducing the space for new music. Eventually, the expectations of repertoire forced pianists to only devote time to this established canon, rather than ‘wasting’ time on difficult contemporary pieces. This divide is even apparent today, with pianists clearly separated into those who serve Early Music, those who serve the Common Practice Period and those who perform new music. Programming now falls into one of two models: the historical survey, and the complete edition. The historical survey usually attempted to expose a historical progression in the Common Practise Period (the Bach to Brahms approach). The complete edition recital presented an entire opus, or several, by the same composer. Perhaps the most amazing recital of this form was presented by Rubinstein, who programmed eight major Beethoven sonatas in one evening (Moonlight, Tempest, Waldstein, Appassionata, op.90, op.101, op.109 and op.111). In the 20th century, Friedman, Horowitz and others reduced the epic proportion of the Romantics, formalising today’s degustation style of programming. The book also addresses issues of memorisation. We are told that Liszt, traditionally seen as the founder of the modern piano recital, often played from scores; and it was not unknown for him to learn pieces during performances! The inherent scratchy nature
of the first run-throughs of these programmes was remarked upon in letters by his contemporaries. However, by 1892, Pachmann was vilified by a London critic for using the score in a performance of Beethoven’s Third Concerto. Beethoven himself reasoned against memorisation arguing that it destroyed a performer’s sight-reading ability and encouraged them to ignore dynamics and articulations. The critic Harold Bauer in 1870 commented on the growing practise: it “Lacked respect for audience and composer by indulging in theatrical display”. One of the more rigorously enforced aspects of concert performance today is applause. From an early age we are all taught to save our applause for the end of a (presumably) complete work, and not to applaud between movements. However, contemporary accounts as far back as Beethoven describe movements being applauded loudly and even being encored before the conclusion of the work. Whilst fantasising, Liszt invited his audience to applaud whenever they heard a thematic combination they enjoyed. Audiences would applaud a dazzling turn or even the appearance of a well-loved composition. Contemporary practice seems to derive from Wagner’s specific instructions to the first audience of Parsifal, of whom he forbade applause of any form. We still seem to suffer from the delusion that applause somehow interrupts the spiritual connection one has with a performance. The most foreign of the discussed aspects is the nearly extinct art of preluding. Hamilton explains how no performance would ever begin with the first piece, as the performer would have to test both his fingers and the piano in order to avoid unpleasant surprises. It is suggested that the tonal ambiguity in some of Liszt’s shorter pieces (which may have been used as preludes) is not utilised for any progressive reasons, but rather so they can be easily
adapted to launch into a piece in any key. Aspects of rubato and asynchronism are also discussed, with particular reference to early 20th century recordings (often of pianists who formulated their style in the mid-19th century). It is clear that performers who preferred chords unspread in their theoretical writings were not adverse to indulging in fruity arpeggiation in their playing. Textual fidelity and issues of Authenticity are also considered. Apparently, it was common practise for composers to alter pieces considerably from the printed score, and many extreme examples are cited. The most amazing perhaps, is a performance of Beethoven’s Third Concerto, upon which passages of the Fifth Symphony were layered. It is suggested that major changes often arrived through the desire for older music to conform to the aesthetic expectations of the 19th century (Liszt and Busoni’s recompositions are a case in point). Liszt himself is given a complete chapter, in which his technique and legacy are reassessed. Hamilton believes that his reputation has been somewhat exaggerated by popular anecdotes, such as his famous flawless sight-reading skills or by reference to the impossible demands contained within his scores. His transcription of Erlkönig is today considered one of the most demanding pieces in Romantic piano literature. However, documentary evidence suggests that Liszt did not perform it at a great speed, and it is clear that the pianos of his time had a far lighter action than those of today. Whilst still an incredibly difficult work, it is not the impossibility it may seem. Kenneth Hamilton does not advocate the return to 19th century practices. Rather, he encourages pianists to question received wisdom, to research documentary sources themselves, and to finally make their own decisions based on their own aesthetic desires rather than those of contemporary conservatory practice.
Dido and Aeneas Alexander O’Sullivan Research Editor ido and Aeneas is rightly viewed as England’s only unquestioned operatic masterpiece. The first known performance of the work was at boarding school for girls in Chelsea, London, according to the earliest extant libretto. Dating the work and performance has been a perennial problem for scholars; all that can be said for certain is that the performance must have taken place before December 1689, when the spoken epilogue was published. The work is often considered in comparison with John Blow’s Venus and Adonis (April 1684) which was composed as a court entertainment, and later arranged for another girls’ school. In the New Grove Dictionary of Opera, Curtis Price conjectures that Dido and Aeneas was also a court entertainment first, with the Prologue (to which the music is lost) seemingly referencing the Glorious Revolution of 1688. However, it is clear that the libretto does not obey a single interpretation, and the original purpose of the opera will forever remain unknown unless further sources are discovered. Interestingly, there is no contemporaneous comment on the opera until 1698, in which Dido’s first aria was printed. The libretto itself was written by Nathum Tate, and is broadly based on Virgil’s Aeneid. In this epic poem Aeneas is driven from Troy to seek refuge in Carthage, which is ruled by the widowed queen Dido. Aeneas’s mother Venus senses that Dido’s motives may not be pure, and plots her ruin by cursing her with a wild passion for Aeneas. Dido’s guardian, Juno, seeks to foil the plan by forcing Dido and Aeneas to shelter
from a storm in a cave, where they will consummate their love and form a new empire spawning from Carthage. Only the consummation takes place, for when Jupiter hears this news, he sends Mercury to summon Aeneas to found Rome. Aeneas barely thinks twice before leaving, and Dido throws herself on a funeral pyre. Tate refashioned the story into his play Brutus of Alba or the Enchanted Lovers, which he then adapted for Purcell. The most striking difference between his libretto and the classical poem is the transformation of Dido from a wild, exotic other to a tragic heroine. Dido is no longer the lovesick stepping stone for Aeneas; now Aeneas is portrayed as a cad from the very beginning of the work. The other major addition was that of the witches, which aside from obviously referencing Macbeth (c.16031611) offer a simpler explanation for the storm and the appearance of Mercury – a kind of Demonio ex machina. The earliest surviving sources are the libretto used for the Chelsea performance, and another dated 1700 in which the work was interpolated as masque in a performance of Measure for Measure. The earliest extant score dates from after 1777, and is missing the prologue and the end of the second act. It is more than three times removed from Purcell’s original, and is certainly a mutilated form of Purcell’s original. However, this is the score that audiences have taken to, and has intrinsic worth on its own terms. The music of the opera is generally simpler than that of Purcell’s later work, with primarily monophonic choruses, and restrained arias. Much of the work is delivered in a fairly dramatic arioso,
interspersed with solos, duets, and a great quantity of choral interruptions. The musical drama works on many levels: for example in the ships scene, the sailor’s chorus both sets the scene and ominously predicts Aeneas’s departure. The work is noted for its complex word setting, pungent dissonances and reliance on dance meters and forms. The many problems a production of Dido and Aeneas faces are familiar to most students of opera. They were even published in an article in Early Music subtitled An Investigation into Sixteen Problems. The most difficult are: the work’s short length, the lack of an adequate performing edition, the positioning of the chorus, the characterisation of the witches and Aeneas, Dido’s death and perhaps most challenging of all, the use of dance. A review of the School’s production will appear in the September issue of SOM Times. References: •Price, Curtis, “Dido and Aeneas” The new Grove dictionary of Opera, ed. by Stanley Sadie (London: Macmillan; New York: Grove’s Dictionaries, 1992) vol. 1, 1169-1171. •Savage, Roger and Tilmouth, Michael. “Producing “Dido and Aeneas”: An Investigation into Sixteen Problems with a Suggestion to Conductors in the Form of a Newly-Composed Finale to the Grove Scene”, Early Music 4/4 (Oxford University Press, 1976) 393-406. •Schmafeldt, Janet. “In Search of Dido”, Journal of Musicology 18/4 (University of California Press, 2001) 584-615.
Irrelevant Music Marguerite Boland
...continued from title page Four excellent musical experiences were to be had, all involving new music and all involving post-graduate or graduand performers and composers from the ANU’s School of Music. “The beauty of irrelevant music” Gaburo writes “consists of its existence and its search for a context. The beauty of an interpreter (performer) rests in a desire to realize a context for this discovered music which wants one.” The ‘context’ of each of these events made up an important part of the experience — the venue, the audience, the way the event was structured and presented — along with the music itself. The context for “Strike on Stage 1.0” was realised by percussionists and media artists Chi-Hsia (Lisa) Lai and Charles Martin, who were not only the interpreters but equally the creators of the sound art and the experimental technology that was presented here live for the first time (1.0 referencing the performance ‘version’). The new instrument they have created works by way of projecting light onto a kind of projector screen and tracking the shadows cast by their body parts which they move in between the light source and the screen (remember ‘slide evenings’ as a kid, learning to make the rabbit and the fox with your fingers). Using computer vision technology, they have developed a processing system that triggers sound events based on the movement of these shadows. Lisa and Charles see “the video screen as a new instrument in their percussive vocabulary” and it’s true that percussionists are the ideal performers to interact with this technology: they have a wide range of movements they can carry out while striking a variety of percussion instruments, making not only sound but also shadow movements which trigger the computer-generated sounds. The electronic sounds have also been designed by Lisa and Charles and in version 1.0 they consisted of percussive and pitched sounds as well as ‘real’ sounds like thunder and rain. Shadows are not the only things projected onto the screen either; a range of images, from photographic collages to paintlike coloured blotches, were manipulated by the performers’ shadow movements, resulting in a rich visual as well as sonic experience. The new instrument has been brilliantly conceived and the realisation of performance 1.0 was exciting, mesmerising at times, and brimming with imaginative delight. After the performance, the audience was invited to come up to make their own shadow movements, and play around with the sounds and images to get a feel for how the instrument worked. Hands and arms flashed in front of the screen for at least half an hour, the audience members fascinated by the interactivity of the screen and the sheer pleasure of being able to so eas-
ily ‘create’ something. A dancer (or maybe she was a actor) used her whole body, curving her back, stretching out a leg, suggesting the potential for dance/theatre/visual art collaborations. The venue for “Strike on Stage 1.0” was the Dance Studio of the new Belconnen Arts Centre and the fresh and modern feel of the Arts Centre itself suited the new, experimental nature of the performance. The open and slightly irregularly shaped foyer and the adjoining gallery, both with large windows out onto Ginninderra Lake, invited thinking about how the space could be used for other music events (the building is worth a visit in person or online just to check out the architecture). It is exciting that Lisa and Charles are both off to different parts of Scandinavia to pursue further post-graduate study this year, although as a composer I’m mildly disappointed at not being able to collaborate with them and their new instrument — but that will be for another time ... version 5.1 maybe? An entirely different context was provided by a group of mostly wind players who came together at Lyneham’s The Front Cafe, on a Sunday afternoon at the end of June, to present “Sound Bites”. From the outside this cosy gallery and cafe doesn’t appear to have the space for anything like a band, let alone a group of six performers, an audio system and large speakers. But the homey couches and chairs were huddled together to make room for a row of music stands and the musicians negotiated their way around leads, instrument cases and each other with practised grace. It was a ‘salon style’ event, with the noises of the coffee machine and dishwashing from the cafe’s kitchen mixing with the applause and filling in the silences during set-up changes. Tucked up on a sofa, nursing my hot chocolate, I felt welcome and snug in the company of about 15 people, and open to listening to anything. The concert seemed to have come about because a number of the performers happened to be coming to Canberra at the same time, the group enjoys playing together and collaborating on compositions and improvisations, and so decided to organise a gig. It also seemed to have been sparked by Nicole Canham’s new tarogato — originally a Hungarian folk instrument, it was reconstructed in a different guise at the end of the 19th century to share characteristics of both saxophone and clarinet. Nicole (an ANU graduate of some years ago) has been inviting new works for the tarogato from composers (see the call for scores on her website) and “Sound Bits” presented a few first performances of these pieces. ANU post-grad composer Ian Blake’s piece called “twmp” was for tarogato, soprano sax, tambourine and drone, performed by Nicole and Ian himself on sax. “A twmp” Ian tells us “is a small Welsh
mound: the sort of place you could park some musicians who would play for dancing.” The bourrée feel of the piece, the accompanying tambourine (which Nicole tapped with her foot) and the background drone did indeed invite us to get up and dance ... alas for the lack of space. The players were also experimenting with arrangements of pieces (Bach, Piazzolla, Ross Edwards) for tarogato and combinations of bassoon and soprano sax. The sounds blended in unusual ways and highlighted the uniqueness of the tarogato compared to its other reedy cousins. Another piece by Ian Blake that really suited the setting was “The River Daughter” for soprano and bassoon with an accompanying multitrack of treated bassoon and soprano sounds. All live and recorded sounds were produced by bassoonist and soprano Zoey Pepper. The piece has a number of nice layers to it. The central text is taken from Ovid’s Metamorphosis poem about Daphne’s transformation into a laurel tree, and is book-ended by excerpts from Rainer Maria Rilke’s The Sonnets to Orpheus where he refers to Daphne’s transformed state. The wandering tonality of the Rilke sections contrasts with a drone and psalm-like treatment of the Ovid text (for a ‘sound bite’ see www.ianblake.net/music-27.html). The piece is structured so that the live singer, accompanied by recorded bassoon, transforms into the live bassoon player accompanied by recorded chanting, thus changing identity and merging with the tree-like instrument that is the bassoon in a symbolic transformation that parallels Daphne’s own. In the closeness of the little cafe and engulfed by the recorded sound, Zoey’s singer-bassoonist transformation had an almost magical quality to it. For the end of the evening, there was a change of direction. Nicole’s tarogato joined jazz performers Miroslav Bukovsky (trumpet) and Col Hoorweg (electronic percussion) in a set of improvisations, opening up the last piece to anyone who has an instrument with them. An appropriate close to the friendly informality of the evening. And on to a very different setting — this time to what must be Canberra’s most inviting of formal recital halls, the Wesley Music Centre. Pianist Edward Neeman (ANU graduate, Manhattan School of Music graduate and current Juilliard School post-graduate) presented a solo recital that encompassed early Beethoven (Op.3, No.2), Schubert (the first of the three last sonatas, C minor D.958) and Chopin (Etudes, Op.25), as well as pieces by two ANU composers, Alistair Noble (ANU graduate) and myself. While a more ‘traditional’ recital setting, the concert also had a nice touch of informality to it: there were no program notes, instead Edward spoke to the pieces once in each half; Terry Neeman
… do we need to be mindful of what we layer on top of the music and the musical performance, what we force into its ‘context’?
provided the tasty refreshments at interval; children from teenagers to young primary school kids were in the audience. One of the really enjoyable aspects of this concert for me — apart from the excitement of hearing my own piece, composed 17 years earlier, given its first full performance — was having had the opportunity to discuss and work with Edward on my piece beforehand. This is also something that Alistair and Edward himself expressed as being an enjoyable and valuable part of the pre-performance process. And possibly for the first time, I got a sense of how a piece can begin to have a life of its own in the hands of such an accomplished performer as Edward. Once the details have all been taken care of (dynamics, phrasing, minutia of accentuation and articulation, that are sometimes impossible to communicate in a system of notation), then there is something else ... a performer’s interpretation? But what is that? Maybe it’s an understanding of the music as music, of what it is wanting to be. Or maybe it’s a desire, as Gaburo claims: “...a desire to realize a context for this discovered music which wants one.” The musical context of the program had certainly been carefully conceived. One of themes threading its way through the more than two centuries of music, Edward told us, was ‘youth’: all pieces had been composed before the composers had turned 40. But the other theme that stood out to me was ‘experimentation’. Alistair’s piece glasteppich i experimented with time — its elasticity, its delicacy — in a piece that unfolded sparsely-placed singular sound events over a 13 minute time span, but which nonetheless, almost imperceptibly, created a sense of trajectory and development. My piece, Two Miniatures, experimented with the opposite — densely interlaced motivic and harmonic material that played out in a quick succession of rhythmically and registrally varied gestures. The early Beethoven sonata and the Romantic pieces were no less experimental … but that story will need to be told another time. The setting for the last concert “Piano+Piano” was Llewellyn Hall. The ‘context’, which I’ll return to in a moment, was not entirely clear. As an ‘official’ School of Music event, it was billed as “Alumni Concert #1”. Promotional material for the concert included stylish photographs of the two pianists (“Piano+Piano”) as well as Larry Sitsky … but why were these particular alumni brought together for this event? And what music were we going to hear? As it turned out, it was a feast of pianistic talent featuring Edward Neeman giving the Australian première of Larry Sitsky’s piano sonata written especially for him; and Michael Azzopardi (ANU jazz graduate) giving an impressive solo performance of well-known Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea tunes as well as his own compositions. Edward performed the sizeable sonata “Retirer d’en bas de l’eau” magnificently, carrying off Larry’s masterful shaping of a large-scale dramatic trajectory with complete convic-
tion. The most surprising movement was the opening movement, a delicate wash of ‘water’ music that created a moving gentleness. This was counter-balanced by dramatic fist and arm clusters in one of the later movements. In the second half of the concert, Michael Azzopardi gave an equally masterful solo jazz performance, no mean feat when the customary rhythm section is not there to share around the attention. Musically, each half of this concert had its own integrity and creative interest, but the experience of the event as a whole was, for me at least, strangely discomforting (which, I hasten to say, had nothing to do with the music or the performers). Was it a mismatch of ‘contexts’? – the music still seeking one, the performers clearly desiring to realise one for the music …but how? An official event that recognises and celebrates talent and achievement aims, of course, to be an affirming and encouraging experience. There was a lot of talk accompanying the concert by School of Music representatives, telling the story of the idea behind the Alumni concert series, congratulating the School for its past alumni achievements (a significant one being the retaining of alumni on staff at the ANU), emphasising the commitment of the School to future events like these. (Unfortunately, the specific achievements of the alumni in this concert were not mentioned but I guess that was covered in the program notes.) But … do we need to be mindful of what we layer on top of the music and the musical performance, what we force into its ‘context’? Do we need to be mindful of the ‘ownership’ of the ‘context’ – turning the freedom of irrelevance into a constricted relevance, appropriating the interpreter’s “desire to realize a context for this discovered music which wants one.”? In offering logos, series names and honours, should we not avoid trying to gain authority over the music, trying to ‘own’ the performance, the performers/composers ... the experience. Gaburo: “In that owning-system, one speaks of performers, say, as good or bad property, and created works as good or bad material. If one is good property and finds good material one can become a package. If one becomes a package one can be managed. Once one becomes managed one can be sold.” It is no secret that universities tread a fine line in this respect. The excellence of all these events — each very different in nature and content — lay not in some externally determined benchmark, in some sales pitch, or in any greater purpose outside of the experience itself (‘world première’, ‘international best-seller’, ‘soon-to-tour-Europe’). For me, it lay in the fact that groups of people (performers, composers, audiences) created their own contexts for the new and the experimental, created their own reasons and motivations to share a momentary musical experience — which may be why people still compose … which may be the only purpose music can ever really have.
Mozart in context: The Marriage of Figaro Amy Turnbull
ozart composed the opera Le Nozze de Figaro or The Marriage of Figaro in 1786 primarily as a populist opera, which was designed to appeal to the upper middle class and aristocracy. He attempted to do this by appealing to some of the ideals of the enlightenment, mocking the old royalty and using popular artistic styles of the time. However, despite his best efforts, the opera failed in its premiere in Vienna. In order to understand why this is so, we will first look at the political and social context of Vienna and how it relates to the subject content of the opera and compare the subject content of the opera to the original play and its context. We will then investigate larger structure of the opera and how it relates to the economic and artistic context of the time. Finally I will be supporting each point with a close analysis of Act II scene IX which is part of the finale in act II. Joseph II was the Emperor of the Austrian Habsburg dominions from 17801790. He spent a large amount of his time in Vienna, which was the capital at the time. Joseph II sympathised with many of the ideals of the enlightenment and attempted to realise them in society through his many reforms. These had limited success. His reforms included: The suppression of the rich monasteries; allowing the practice of non-catholic faiths, the introduction of poor relief, the prohibition of child labour, and the abolishment of the death penalty. He also established schools, asylums and Hospitals. Many of the traditional aristocracy did not like these reforms, which weakened their balance sheets, and although no disagreement was voiced in the beginning of his reign it was resistance to this policy that forced Joseph to make many retractions in his last year. The Marriage of Figaro was composed in the middle of Joseph II reign and its subject content reflects his ideals.. Mozart wanted to create an opera which the Viennese people would like. He knew that comedy had to be a key element and said “The chief thing must be the comic element, for I know the taste of the Viennese” in
a letter to his father in 1783. Both the subject content and the use of opera buffa as the form reflect this. Mozart’s opinion can be further validated by a look at the popular operas and plays of the time, these largely constituted of opera buffa and comic plays. The play was also very popular in France and is the sequel to The Barber of Seville was very popular in Vienna. The subject content of the opera ‘The Marriage of Figaro’ is an adaptation of the French comedy play of the same title by Pierre Beaumanchais. The play The marriage of Figaro was First performed in 1784 and was very popular in France at the time. The play is the sequel to the Barber of Seville which was also composed by Beaumanchais It played in the Burgtheatre, the main theatre in Vienna, from 1776 to 1783. The play The Marriage of Figaro embodied the ideas of the enlightenment and was very provocative against the aristocracy. Consequently Joseph II banned the German translation of play in 1985 unless it was censored of its more offensive passages. One of the reasons that the opera wasn’t a complete success in Vienna was because of its less radical political comment in comparison to the original play. “The portrait of the aristocracy drawn in Mozart’s opera does not break new ground in realism or audacity, but parallels contemporary trends on the stage” In order to be able to write an opera based on a banned play Mozart must first obtain permission from the emperor, Joseph II. The libretto for the opera was written by Da Ponte who relates in his memoirs how he persuaded the Emperor to allow the opera to be performed. Sir, answered I, as I had to write an opera, and not a comedy, I have been able to omit certain scenes, and shorten others, and I have carefully expunged whatever might offend the decency of a theatre over which you majesty presides. If that is the case, replied he, I rely on you opinion for the goodness of the music, and on your prudence for the choice of the characters: you may immediately give the parts to the copyist. Hence a large amount of the play content which ridiculed the aristocracy was edited out in the opera. The play was also abbreviated because of the requirements of the form of the Opera buffa. Da Ponte had to reduce cast numbers to a manageable amount of 11 which was still more then the conventional number. He also either simplified or removed several strands of the plot and characters were stripped of their complexities so that they almost act as familiar stereotypes. The finales in opera buffa must consist of fast tutti sections thus the material at the end of acts must be suitable for this. The end of Act II is an example
of this. In the play The act ends quietly with the characters dispersed, in the opera however Da Ponte was obliged to create material suitable for a tutti section. The public greatly anticipated the opera as the sequel of The Barber of Seville, and due to the editing out of play content for both political and artistic reasons it did not live up to their expectations. The opera, while not radically different, does break some musical conventions of the time. The opera has four acts instead of the usual two. There was also a controversy in the second half of the eighteenth century between those who asserted the primacy of music in opera, and traditionalists who valued the poetryof the libretto higher. Mozart thought that the music was the most important aspect which is illustrated in a letter to his farther in 1783 where he states that “his libretto will certainly not go down well if the music is not good. For in opera the chief thing is the music” This opinion was endorsed by others in the musical community of Vienna, including Salliari. Although Mozart obviously put a lot of thought into aspects of his composition in order to create an opera which was popular, there was still some stylistic reasons why the opera was not a huge success in Vienna. During the late eighteenth century Audiences generally favoured the operatic style Italian composers rather then German. The Italian style was considered to be simple and lyrical while the German style was considered to be complicated and lacking in tune. Mozart was also considered to change key too often. The reasons for this dislike for change in key is expressed by the composer Piccinni “To quit a key almost as soon as we have entered it, to become extravagant without reason.... is to prove that the artist is ignorant of the end of his art as well of its principles” John Brown, a contemporary Scottish painter also expressed a similar view “nor will German music much delight those who have been long accustomed to more simple melody” That Mozart’s Opera’s received lukewarm reception in Vienna is also recorded in a conversation between Joseph II and Diggersdorf where the former said “Nor did Mozat’s music make much of a sensation among our public. It is for the connoisseur who knows how to unravel its refinements rather tan for the dilettante who lets himself be guided by his natural feeling ” We have looked at the broader structure of the Opera and related it to its context, I will now give a close analysis of Act II Scene IX – the second scene in the finale. Which, is attached as appendix 1. Preluding Scene IX, the Count believes that the Countess is hiding a lover in her dressing room, In truth Cherubino was hidden there, but not as a lover, he was dressing up in girls cloths so as to pretend to be Susanna as part of Figaro’s plot against the Count. Cherubino hearing the Count, jumps out the window in fright. The Countess admits that Cherubino is there and why. Scene IX opens with the Count finding Susanna and
Susanna only in the dressing room. Confusing both the the Count and the Countess. To create a populist opera Mozart uses primarily popular musical conventions of the time. Tonic-Dominant relationships are integral to harmony in the late eighteenth century. Tension is created in music by moving clockwise around the circle of fifths while relaxation of tension is created by moving anticlockwise. The overall Key changes in the finale follows a general increase in tension followed by a relaxation of tension. Overall harmonic structure of Act II finale: Key: Eb → Bb → Bb → G → C → F → Bb → Eb
This is typical of a piece of that time and also reflects sonata form. The finale of act II also fits the typical form for opera buffa, ending with a fast tutti. Mozart himself also comments on this necessity in a letter to his father “It must wind up with a great deal of noise, which is always appropriate at the end of an act” Mozart was aware of the Dramatic effects of modulations. One example of this is given in a letter to his father. But since passions whether violent or not, must never be expressed to the point of exciting disgust, and as music, even in the most terrible situations must never offend the ear, but must please the listener... so I have not chosen a key remote from F(in which the aria is written). But one related to it – but not the nearest, D minor, but the more remote A minor. Mozart uses these kinds of modulations within the opera for example. Scene IX begins at the key change, from Eb to Bb major of the first piece in the finale, just after the Count opens the door to find Susanna in the closet. It opens with Susanna singing. There is also a tempo change here to molto andante from allegro. The overall key within Scene IX is Bb major. The molto andante is entirely in Bb major without any modulations. No accidentals are present at all. The harmonic structure is quite simple. Consisting of almost entirely tonic and dominant chords. Bb is however, a move clockwise around the circle of fifths from Eb, which an increase in tension. From the previous scene, This is a reflection of the appearance of Susanna. There is a change in tempo to Allegro at bar 268. this corresponds to the point when the Count goes into the closet to ensure that no one else was there apart from Susanna. It is a moment of increased agitation betrayed by the Countess. At this point there is also some chromaticism, with the introduction of a B natural in the violin part. This as well as the tempo change creates tension in the piece. The allegro goes through a number of key centre changes (shown right). Harmonically. this is a roughly
symmetrical pattern, which is similar to modulations within sonata form. There are some sections however where Mozart does travel through many keys in a short space of time. One example of this is the last section, though primarily in Bb still has a large section, bars 312-324, where he modulates extensively using secondary dominants. Throughout this scene there is no blatant denouncing of upper class in the play, and as mentioned above this, could be a reason for the plays tepid reception in Vienna, Susanna does however, manage to avoid the exposure of Cheruino, thus revealing that she is cleverer then her superiors. This is reflected in the melodic lines of the characters. Susanna’s voice and melodic line is higher then the Countess’s. During this time period a lot of music was homophonic, one melody with an accompaniment this immediately elevates Susanna’s character, as being superior to the rest. During the molto andante. Throughout the opera, musically there is little difference Susanna’s and the Countess’s melodic line. This is expmplefied in Act II scene IX where Susanna’s melodic line is actually more complex, and hence more interesting and has relatively more larger interval jumps in it compared to the Count and Countess, who move mostly in steps or with repeated notes. And whose part has mostly an accompanying function. Susanna’s line is still very simple and beautiful. This may suggest that her character is superior to that of the Count, and Countess, and, since she is of a lower class to the Countess it implies that the lower class is superior. Thus making a social comment. Another instance where music is used to emphasise the superiority of the lower class is during the final passage of the Allegro, bar 307, where the three characters sing the same text, Susanna’s melodic line however has a slightly different rhythm to that of the Count and Countess, this aligns the characters in their class as well as perhaps asserting Susanna’s superior character. Another way in which The Marriage of Figaro differed from other more famous operas is that it contains a smaller percent of aria content then other more popular op-
era’s of the time. It contained about 50% areas whereas the more popular Una cosa rara composed by Vincente martin y Soler contained about 63% The requirement of an aria is that it is static, the composer is obliged to describe one sentiment, or state of mind. This puts constraints on the dramatic movement of the opera. Mozart avoided these reflective, static arias so he could keep momentum in his opera. In composing The Marriage of Fiagro Mozart was not interested in making any radical comment against the aristocracy, he was, however, still aware of political and social issues of the time. Above is some evidence to support this. This relevant to current musicology issues as there is some debate as to whether or not Mozart was indeed aware and indeed scholars use The marriage of Figaro as proof for, or against this. From this analysis it is evident that the opera The Marriage of Figaro was written with the intention of being a populist opera. Mozart chose the subject content and form of the piece with the intentions of creating an opera that would sell. He wrote primarily using the musical conventions of the time, and where they differed it was with attention to creating an opera which would be popular. Despite this, the opera was not a huge success in Vienna. Two main factors influenced this. As the sequel to The Barber of Seville it was greatly anticipated and its less radical political comment compared to the original play meant that it did not live up to the expectations of the audience. The audience’s of Vienna favoured the simple style of Italian composers over what was considered the more complicated on of Germans. The Marriage of Figaro was considered too complex, melodically and harmonically for the general audience to enjoy. From this we can see that despite careful planing, the popularity of a work still relies on the natural taste of the audience. Bibliography: • Anderson, E. (1966) The Letters of Mozart and His Family, Vol II, St Martin Press, New York • Brown, J.(1789) Letters upon the opetry and Music of Italian Opera, Edinburgh, p. 16 • Carlton R. A. ‘Changes in Status and Role-Play: The Musician at the End of the Eighteenth Century’, International Review of the Aethetics and Sociology of Music, Vol. 37, No. 1 (June 2006) pp. 3-16 • Deutsh, O.E.,(1966), Mozart, A Documentary Biography, trans. E. Blom, P. Branscombe, and J Noble, London, p 340 • “Joseph II.” Encyclopædia Britannica. 2010. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 02 Jun. 2010 <http://www.britannica. com/EBchecked/topic/306348/Joseph-II>. • Goldovsky. B (1991), The Adult Mozart: A Personal Perspective, D. Armstrong, C., Inc, Houston, Texas • Heartz D. ‘Mozart and Da Ponte’, The Musical Quarterly, Vol. 79, No. 4 (Winter 1995), pp. 700-718 • Heartz. D, (1990), Mozart’s Operas, University of California Press, Oxford, England, p.137 • Levarie, S. (1977), Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Da Capo Press, New York, p. 107 • Mac Arthur, E. J. ‘Embodying the Public Sphere: Censorship and the reading Subject in Beaumarchais’s Mariage de Figaro’ Representations, No. 61, (Winter, 1998), pp. 57 • Mozart W.A, Da Ponte. L., (1983), Le Nozze di Figaro, [mini score], Ernst Eulenburg Ltd, London. • Nosk. Frits, ‘Social Tensions in ‘Le Nozze di Figaro’, Music & Letters, Vol. 55, No. 1, (Jan., 1969), p 45 • Platoff, J. ‘Tonal Organisation in ‘Buffo’ Finales and the Act II Finale of ‘Le nozze di Figaro’, Music & Letters, Vol. 72, No.3 (Aug., 1991) p. 387-403 • Steptoe. A, (1990), The Mozart-Da Ponte operas, Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp. 171-172
Sunday 1st August John Gould Trio Wesley Music Centre 3pm John Gould (violin), Rita Woolhouse (cello) and Anne Stevens (piano) perform piano trios by Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Brahms $25/$15/$12 tickets at door ph: 6260 8911 Wendy Quinlan RR3 3pm ANU School of Music Alumnus Wendy Quinlan is joined by the Fabulous Flutes of the ANU $25/$20 tickets at door ph: 6125 5700 Tuesday 3th August The World According to James The Gods Cafe 8pm Comprising trombonist and composer James Greening, alto saxophonist Andrew Robson, bassist Steve Elphick and drummer Toby Hall. $18/$12 bookings recommended ph: 6248 5538 Wednesday 4th August Wednesday Lunchtime Live Wesley Music Centre 12:40pm Featuring School of Music Graduate, pianist Adam Cook performing Shostakovich and Scriabin. $2 tickets at door ph: 6232 7248 Thursday 5th August Ricardo Gallen Llewellyn Hall 7:30pm With Spanish Guitarist Ricardo Gallen. $35/$30/$20 http://www.ticketek.com.au/ ph: 132 849 Saturday 7th August Musica da Camera Holy Covenant Church 2:30pm Music of Tchaikovsky, Barber, Handel and Roseingrave. $20/$15 tickets at door ph: 6251 1568 or 0419 255 002
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Sunday 8th August Forrest National Chamber Orchestra Wesley Music Centre 3pm Fund-raising for WMF String Scholarships. Includes Sibelius, Saint-Saëns, Suk, and Mozart with soloists Rebecca Smith and Jeremy Tatchell $15/$10 tickets at door ph: 6295 1553 or 6232 7248
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SOM Premier Series Concert 3 Llewellyn Hall 3pm Virginia Taylor and Timothy Kain per-
form contemporary works for flute and guitar. $35/$30/$20 http://www.ticketek.com.au/ ph: 132 849 Tuesday 10th August Romeo and Juliet Canberra Theatre Centre 7:30pm The New Zealand Ballet joins with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra with Christopher Hampson’s choreography and Sergei Prokofiev’s music. $35-$79 ph: 6275 2700 Wednesday 11th August Wednesday Lunchtime Live Wesley Music Centre 12:40pm To be advised $2 tickets at door ph: 6232 7248 String Soiree RR3 6pm Featuring staff and students of the ANU School of Music String Area. $5 tickets at door ph: 6125 5700 Romeo and Juliet Canberra Theatre Centre 7:30pm See details Tuesday 10th August Thursday 12th August Romeo and Juliet Canberra Theatre Centre 7:30pm See details Tuesday 10th August Friday 13th August The Dream Playhouse 7:30pm Crossover string orchestra deepblue combine film, classics, rock and electronics. $38/$32/$26/$20 ph: 6275 2700 Romeo and Juliet Canberra Theatre Centre 7:30pm See details Tuesday 10th August Saturday 14th August Romeo and Juliet Canberra Theatre Centre 1:30pm and 7:30pm See details Tuesday 10th August Sunday 15th August The Complete Bach Keyboard Llewellyn Hall 1pm As Arnan Wiesel’s Bach series comes to its conclusion, he introduces the clavichord for the first time with the piano. $30/$25 limited seating ph: 6125 5700
Sarah Kim Wesley Church 3pm Outstanding young Australian organist Sarah Kim performs Bach, Brahms, Saint-Saëns and Widor. $30/$25/$15/$5 tickets at door ph: 6232 7248 Wednesday 18th August Wednesday Lunchtime Live Wesley Music Centre 12:40pm Featuring the Brew Guitar Duo (Bradley Kunda and Matthew Withers). $2 tickets at door ph: 6232 7248 Thursday 19th August The Will to Freedom Street Two 8pm A music-driven monodrama about women, fundamentalism and freedom. Written and performed by Maike Brill with original music composed and performed by Anthony Smith. $25/$22 ph: 6247 1223 Friday 20th August Canberra Classical Guitar Society Wesley Music Centre 7:30pm With prominent young Australian guitarists Aleksandr Tsiboulski and Jacob Cordover. $20/$15 tickets at door ph: 0403 640 669 The Will to Freedom Street Two 6pm and 8pm See details Thursday 19th August. Angela Little “Celtic Fire” Street One 8pm New musical show which combines the ethereal voice of Angela Little (from Baz Luhmann’s ‘Australia’) with the excitement of Irish dancing, tribal rhythms, cinematic sounds, and visual projections. $25/$20 ph: 6247 1223 Saturday 21st August The Will to Freedom Street Two 6pm and 8pm See details Thursday 19th August. Ensemble Offspring Street One 8pm Conducted by Roland Peelman, the ensemble performs new works by Tristan Murail, Kaija Saariaho, Giacinto Scelsi, Claude Viver and Australian James Cuddeford $25/$20/$15 ph: 6247 1223
Sunday 22nd August Celebrating Arthur Benjamin Wesley Music Centre 2pm Pianists Wendy Hiscocks and Roy Howart play Debussy, Ravel, Stravinsky, Lambert, Mayerl and Benjamin. Includes pre-concert talk by Hiscocks. $25/$20/$10/$5 ph: 6232 7248 Percussion Concert Band Room 3pm Featuring staff and students of the ANU School of Music Percussion Area. $TBA ph: 6275 2700 The Will to Freedom Street Two 8pm See details Thursday 19th August. Wednesday 25th August Canberra Symphony Orchestra Llewellyn Series 10:3 Llewellyn Hall 7:30pm Chopin Piano Concerto No. 2 & Op.22 Brahms Symphony No. 2 ph. 6262 6772 www.cso.org.au David Hatch Wesley Music Centre 12:40pm Performing the Brahms Clarinet Quintet. $2 tickets at door ph: 6232 7248 Thursday 26th August Dido and Aeneas & Bastien und Bastienne St Philip’s O’Connor 7:30pm CAMRA presents Henry Purcell’s Masterpiece along with one of Mozart’s earliest operas $25/$20 http://www.camra.asn.au/ Canberra Symphony Orchestra See details Wednesday 25th August. Friday 27th August Dido and Aeneas Street One 8pm The School of Music presents Purcell’s only operatic masterpiece in a new edition by Geoffrey Lancaster. $30/$20 ph: 6247 1223 Saturday 28th August Dido and Aeneas Street One 8pm See entry Friday 27th August for details The Big Band Sound Canberra Theatre 7:30pm In a Fund-raising event for Legacy,
the band of the Royal Military College presents works for concert band and big bands in a two and a half hour spectacular. $50/$40 ph: 6275 2700 Dido and Aeneas & Bastien und Bastienne St Philip’s O’Connor 7:30pm See details Thursday 27th August
Sunday 29th August From Hilarious to Haunting Wesley Music Centre 3pm Soprano Sally Wilson and pianist Mark Kruger perform a selection of English songs by Delius, Haydn, Elgar, Britten, Bolcom and others. $25/$20/$10/$5 tickets at door http://www.artsongcanberra.org/ ph: 6295 9613 Dido and Aeneas Street One 4pm See entry Friday 27th August for details Tuesday 31st August Nguyêñ Lê-Tuyên Llewellyn Hall 10am A Lecture Recital of new Australian Guitar music with Vietnamese Cultural Influences. Free admission ph: 6215 5700
Venue Information Llewellyn Hall, RR3, Band Room ANU School of Music William Herbert Place (off Childers Street) Acton http://music.anu.edu.au/ ph: 6125 5700 Street Theatre (Street One and Street Two) Corner Childers Street and University Avenue Canberra City http://www.thestreet.org.au/ ph: 6247 1519 Wesley Music Centre and Church National Circuit Forrest http://www.wesleycanberra.org.au/ ph: 6295 3680 St Philip’s Church O’Connor Corner Macpherson and Moorhouse Streets O’Connor http://www.stphilipsoconnor.org.au/ Canberra Theatre and Playhouse Civic Square, London Circuit Canberra City http://www.canberratheatrecentre.com.au/ ph: 6275 2700
For more upcoming events, see http://music.anu.edu.au/events
30 July Rex Hotel Canberra
ANU SCHOOL OF MUSIC PRESENTS
NGUYÊῆ LÊ-TUYÊN A NEw VOICE: Australian guitar music with Vietnamese cultural influences A lecture-recital of new Australian guitar compositions inspired from the Vietnamese music culture. Traditional folksongs, melodic and rhythmic idioms from various regions of Vietnam are brought to life in harmony with art music of the twenty-first century.
TUESDAY 31 AUGUST 2010, 10.00AM Llewellyn Hall, School of Music Free Entry MORE INFO // www.music.anu.edu.au/events VENUE // COST //