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Elegance and 'frisson' in ground-breaking piano concert

BY Geoff Sirmai | 05-Nov-2017
An elegant and luxurious new way to experience classical piano music. One of Australia’s finest musicians is going ‘back to the future’ - while premiering new Australian works – in a tantalising, multisensory event in Sydney this November!
Renowned Australian pianist Bernadette Harvey has (with the assistance of the Australia Council, Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Fazioli pianos) commissioned gifted Australian composers – three of them women - to write new works. Her performance of them reaches back to the sensuous Romantic age to forge a whole new way for contemporary audiences to enjoy classical piano music.

Bernadette will showcase these compositions at the Sydney Conservatorium in a series of twilight concerts in the Verbrugghen Hall, commencing 11th November this year. Capturing the opulence of romantic music salons is the design of Lynne Bradley Interiors. Compelling floral arrangements by Myra Perez of My Violet will be framed by paintings of artist Lara Merrett.

This will be no formal, rigid, modern day piano recital.

“Audiences of that time went to concerts expecting to be entertained,” Bernadette maintains. “They swooned over the clothes Liszt wore; the ambience of the luxurious salon surroundings of the rich and famous – these were all as important to European music lovers as the exciting “new music” which Liszt and his contemporaries were bringing them!”

A multi-award winner, including Young Performer of the Year, the Australian Centenary Medal, international piano competitions - and with numerous CD recordings to her name – Bernadette Harvey is also a master teacher based at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

For the inaugural concert, three sonatas have been composed by rising Australian stars: Aristea Mellos, Jane Stanley and Melody Eötvös. The fourth work is by internationally renowned and much-loved composer Ross Edwards. The first Sonata Project CD will also be launched on the evening of the concert.

The Sonata Project is supported by The Australia Council, the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, the ABC, Con Brio Music School, Lynne Bradley Interiors and fashion label Romance Was Born.

Further concerts – with more new commissions – are planned for 2018.

The Sonata Project: Bernadette Harvey - Saturday 11 November 2017

Verbrugghen Hall, Sydney Conservatorium of Music

Pre-concert entertainment from 6.00pm | Concert from 7pm

Tickets: $50, $35 conc, $15 students. Bookings and info www.bernadetteharvey.com