Society News: August 2014

Warning :
September comes early!

This year September comes one day early for the Lyrebird Music Society with our “September” concert being presented on the last day of August.  Details of the wonderful concert are given below.

Annual General Meeting

It is AGM time again. This will occur after the 5 October concert.  As usual the committee is up for re-election and the President and Treasurer will present their reports. Please come along and hear from your committee about the Society and have your say. The meeting will also hear more about the inclusion of the Society on the Federal Government’s Register of Cultural Organisations.

At the last two AGMs there have been significant changes to the Society’s rules, firstly to allow for the creation of a trust fund supporting tax deductible donations and then last year to bring the Society’s rules into line with the “Associations Incorporation Reform Act 2012”. This  year there is only one proposed change to the rules. This change which was recommended by Consumer Affairs Victoria should have been included in last year’s changes.

Overdue Subscriptions

Thank you for all those who paid their subscriptions in

July and August. Those yet to pay subscriptions due on 1/7/14 will receive a final notice with this newsletter. The committee would appreciate it if you would please pay promptly.  Subscriptions are ONLY overdue if you receive a yellow notice with this newsletter.

August 31 Concert (note date) Opie and de Jager

Ben Opie (oboe)

Peter de Jager (piano)

Bach Sonata in G minor for oboe and piano BWV1030b

Poulenc: Sonata for oboe and piano Op. 185

Nielsen: Two fantasy pieces for oboe and piano Op. 2

Arnold: Sonatina Op. 29

Koechlin: Le Soir dans la Campagne

Ravel: Pièce en forme de Habanera (1907)

August 2014

Ben Opie is an oboist whose talents extend across the entire repertoire for oboe. His passion for contemporary music has allowed him to work with ensembles that have premiered countless works and developed mixed media performances including live video art, dance and spoken word. Ben has performed in Europe, the Middle East, North America and Australia as a soloist, collaborative and an orchestral musician. His work across the globe has earned him multiple awards and recognitions in music.

Most recently, Ben has been guest associate principal oboe with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. In 2012 and 2013 Ben was acting associate principal oboe and principal cor anglais with the West Australian Symphony and principal oboe in Opera Australia’s Oz Opera touring company. He has also been a guest principal oboe in most of Australia’s national orchestras.

His collaborative efforts have led him to work with producer Gretchen Miller on her Radio National documentary, The Ariadne Project, and with award winning poet Cecilia White on their “Breathing Space” series, Ben was involved in the artistic direction, curation and performances of Breathing Space. In 2012, he was invited to perform with Michael Bardon in the Myriad Ensemble at the Feast Festival in Adelaide. He was also one of the featured artists at the inaugural Bendigo International Festival of Exploratory Music, giving an Australian premiere of a work for solo oboe by Fernando Garnero. Ben has recently released a CD of French Sonatas with pianist, Peter de Jager and has been performing this repertoire around Australia, including a sold out performance to over 600 people in Adelaide’s Elder Hall.

Peter de Jager is gaining a solid reputation as a pianist, harpsichordist and composer around Melbourne. He is a sought-after soloist and collaborative musician for standard, early, and contemporary repertoire. In addition he has directed amateur music theatre productions and accompanied many cabaret performances at The Butterfly Club. He has performed for the Astra Chamber Music Society, collaborated with the new music ensemble Quiver. Peter continues to be company pianist for the contemporary vocal ensemble Aria Co, whose first season at the Melbourne Recital Centre in 2010 was a sellout success.

As a soloist or orchestra member, he has played with most of the major Victorian orchestras, including Orchestra Victoria and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. Peter has a significant and long-standing association with the Australian National Academy of Music. He is currently on faculty as an associate artist and in 2012 was resident emerging composer, with his works to be performed by ANAM students throughout the year.

Peter is beginning to make his mark overseas, participating in the 2009 and 2010 Lucerne Festival Academy – where he was accepted from applicants worldwide – playing under the baton and artistic direction of Pierre Boulez in contemporary orchestral, ensemble, and piano duo repertoire. In 2011, he traveled to North Adams, Massachusetts for the annual Bang On A Can Summer Festival, enjoying three weeks of intensive contemporary music making with a select group of young musicians from around the world. In May 2011, Peter was awarded first prize at the first Australian International Chopin Competition, held at the Australian National University in Canberra.

October 5 Concert To Musicke – A Song

Consort Eclectus (violas da gamba)

Vivien Hamilton (mezzo soprano)

This concert combines the wit and wisdom of music from the Scottish Renaissance with Calvin Bowman’s modern re-invention of music for viols and voice based on the texts of Robert Herrick.

Anon The Gowans are Gay my Jo
Mico Pavan 4 Fantasia 7
Anon Lyk as the dum Solsequium
Johnson Care Charming Sleep Come palefaced death
Lupo Fantasia [Air] 6 à 4 Fantasia [Air] 8 à 4
Bowman For the tomb of Herrick
Anon One yeir begins
Boleyn O Death, Rock me to sleepe de
Sermisy Douce Amour


Consort Eclectus brings the rich repertoire of the viol consort to Australian audiences. Described as ‘heaven sent’ in their debut concert at the Melbourne Autumn Music Festival in 2001, Consort Eclectus has since developed to play an integral role in Early Music performance in Australia. Resident in Melbourne, the group performs regularly in their own subscription series in which they continue to delight with their imaginative programming and fine ensemble work. This is a flexible group specialising in English and Italian renaissance music, often joining forces with solo voices and vocal ensembles. They have commissioned two new works for viols and voice by Australian composers Natalie Williams (kindly supported by the Lyrebird commission for 2006 in memory of Malcolm McIvor) and Calvin Bowman. Both works are featured in the group’s CD Music for Viols and Voice and the later will be heard in the October concert.

The consort has performed in the Canberra Chamber Music Festival, The Organs of the Ballarat Goldfields Festival, the Port Fairy Spring Early Music Festival and the Melbourne Autumn Music Festival. Consort Eclectus have been recorded for broadcast by the ABC including for Sunday Live. The consort began 2014 with a performance at the Sydney Festival with The Hilliard Ensemble, in two contemporary works for voices and viols by Nico Muhly and Gavin Bryars. For this performance Consort Eclectus is joined by distinguished guest artist, soprano Vivien Hamilton.

Scottish-born soprano Vivien Hamilton is one of Australia’s most versatile singers. She knew she wanted to be a professional singer from the age of seven years and studied the piano to support her aspirations. Vivien completed a Bachelor of Music degree (Honours) at the University of Western Australia in musicology with Professor David Tunley, and singing with acclaimed Australian Soprano Molly McGurk.

Vivien regularly performs throughout Australia, in recital, on radio and television. Her career covers a wide portfolio of musical styles and genres: Early Music; 20thcentury vocal ensemble work e.g. Kosky’s Voice, Jam and Videotape for 4 singers, Steve Reich’s Tehillim; French, American, Australian, English Artsong and Contemporary song recitals with piano; theatre e.g. A Little Night Music with MTC; and opera. Currently Vivien works with e21, Consort Eclectus, Rosemary Hodgson (lute), Len Vorster (piano), and Glenn Riddle (piano).

Vivien has recorded for ECM with The Hilliard Ensemble in Passio by Estonian composer Arvo Part; TER Classics with New Sadler’s Wells Opera in Léhar’s The Merry Widow; ABC Classics with Rosalind Halton Olimpia: Cantatas of Alessandro Scarlatti and Move Records Tyrannic Love: Choice Songs and Ayres of the Restoration Stage. Vivien’s most recent CD Burns and Beyond: Songs of Robert Burns pays tribute to Scottish poetry and was released in the Scottish Year of Homecoming, 2009.

Vivien is the director of the Early Voices Ensemble at the Early Music Studio of the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.