I’m just back from a master course with the inspirational composer-conductor Peter Eötvös. I spent a week at the Budapest Music Centre where I had the chance to meet composers Matthias Pintscher, Philippe Manoury and György Kurtág alongside ongoing contemporary repertoire workshops. The Hungarian Music Information Centre was also onsite: I was in my element amongst the scores of the fantastic Eötvös operas! Many thanks to the Eötvös Music Foundation for their kind support.
I recently had the excellent fortune to assist conductor Otto Tausk on the Swiss premiere of George Benjamin’s opera Written on Skin. Directed by Nicola Raab, the production has its fifth and final airing this weekend in St Gallen. It was an honour to be involved in this beautiful project and to be part of such an intuitive creative team.
I will be joining guitarists John Williams and Gary Ryan as part of John’s Concerts by Candlelight series this Summer at Shakespeare’s Globe. His residency will feature diverse music for plucked strings across six programmes in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, all expected to sell out. I will conduct The Light on the Edge for two guitars, didjeridu, harp, bass, zither and environmental sounds by Australian composer Philip Houghton on Saturday 6 June.
Limelight Magazine has run a feature this week about my new shoes! In all seriousness, thanks to everyone for the great response to the article, which I’m hoping translates into a big appetite for New music and curiosity about living composers both in Australia and abroad. For those interested, I talk about the Australian work ethic, building audience trust through creative programming and the idea of a partnership across the fourth wall.
I’m happy to report that last week’s concert for the Tait Memorial Trust was a resounding success, delivering great reviews from Limelight Magazine and Seen and Heard International. Thanks to both writers for their kind words about my connection with the soloists: all were a pleasure to work with and I hope to see each of them again on the platform someday soon. Performance videos are now up on my YouTube channel.
I’ve been invited to conduct a gala concert next month at St John’s Smith Square hosted by the Tait Memorial Trust, a charity which supports young Australian musicians studying in the UK. I will be joined by a barrage of soloists including some of my great friends, with special mention to pianist Jayson Gillham who finds time in a busy touring schedule to commandeer almost half the programme! The selection put together by the Trust will include the premiere of a new work by West Australian composer Kevin Penkin, alongside favourites by Puccini, Mozart, Vaughan Williams and Grainger. Tickets are on sale from the SJSS Box Office.