Category Archives: Classical FM

The Newcastle Con gets Festive in December!

Early Childhood Music Concert

Friday, 2 December 2016 | 6:00pm
The Early Childhood Music end of year concert highlights skills which children from our school-age program have enjoyed developing throughout the year. This is a fun and inspiring concert from our young virtuosos to be!
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Song writing Workshop with
Lennie Edgerton
Saturday, 3 December 2016 | 11am – 2:00pm
Do you suffer from writer’s block?
Do you need help composing your ideas for a song?
Join experienced singer songwriter Lennie Edgerton at the Maitland Conservatorium of Music for this free workshop! FREE ENTRY!

Combined Choirs Christmas Concert
Saturday, 3 December 2016
12 noon
Come along and enjoy this Choral celebration featuring Brainwaves, Callaghan Singers, Echology, Newcastle Indigenous Choir, Songshine and the Youth Ensemble. This concert will delight lovers of voice across all ages!
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Violin Virtuosos Student Showcase

Sunday, 4 December 2016 | 2:30pm
A showcase of violin students and string ensembles from the Conservatorium and surrounding areas
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Community Strings Concert
Tuesday, 6 December 2016 | 6:30pm
Our string ensembles present their Term 4 work! Tickets available at the Box Office from 5:30pm

Christmas Winds Concert

Friday, 9 December 2016 | 7:00pm

Enjoy this Christmas themed concert for the Conservatorium Wind Ensembles Program.
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A Christmas Carol Celebration
Tuesday, 13 December 2016 | 7:00pm
Join Echology to celebrate the festive season with their annual concert: A Christmas Carol Celebration at the Sacred Heart Church, Hamilton. With University of Newcastle Orchestra, Echology will bring you choral delights including innovative new carols and old favourites.
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Israel’s foremost chamber orchestra, the Israel Camerata Jerusalem Orchestra, featuring acclaimed cellist Zvi Plesser, makes its Australian debut performing two magnificent programs at City Recital Hall this September.

Renowned for its “effortless virtuosity, tight instrumental balances and a broad dynamic palette”(LA Times), founder and conductor Avner Biron has brought the Israel Camerata Jerusalem Orchestra to the highest standard in Israeli musical life, and won worldwide recognition for it.

Based in Israel, Zvi Plesser has appeared as a soloist with some of our time’s leading orchestras and conductors including the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Academy of Saint Martin in the Fields under Sir Neville Marriner and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Maestro Sir Simon Rattle.

The programs include Dvořák’s impassioned cello concerto – one of the most magnificent in the repertoire, Ukrainian/Israel composer Mark Koptyman’s landmark works Beyond all this… and Kaddish – inspired by the intricate melodic beauty of Jewish sacred and folk music, Haydn’s joyous Symphony No.85 and the pulse-quickening highly virtuosic Cello Concerto in C major.

City Recital Hall – HAYDN’S ARMIDA

22, 24, 28 JUNE, 7PM, 26 JUNE, 5PM

“Their performances sell out, their audiences are increasingly international, and their repuation for excellence is well earned” – The Financial Times

Join us for an epic experience this June as Pinchgut Opera once again unearths a rarely performed gem. Fresh from her stunning performances at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, soprano Rachelle Durkin performs the title role of Armida. Swedish tenor Leif Aruhn-Solén joins as the love lost knight Rinaldo and the indomitable Antony Walker conducts the Orchestra of the Antipodes on period instruments.

Don’t miss this magnificent performance as Pinchgut Opera presents an evening of sorcery, vengeance, seduction and heartbreak. Haydn proclaimed it his best opera.



Following its recent sell-out performance of Carmina Burana, Sydney Chamber Choir combines with the Orchestra of the Antipodes to present the second concert in its 2016 season Dixit Dominus – featuring sublime early compositions by both Handel and Bach.

Handel was just 20 years of age when he composed his choral masterpiece, Dixit Dominus, a dazzling hymn of joy and praise blending the virtuosic choral writing of his native Germany with the passion and drama of Italian opera. What an extraordinary achievement: youthful exuberance combined with outstanding musical ability!

And Bach was only 22 when he wrote Christ lag in Todesbanden, a richly solemn journey from darkness to resplendent light, exploring the mystery of life and death itself in intricate counterpoint and soaring melody.

Pēteris Vasks’ Prayer, draws on prayers of Mother Teresa in an ecstatic invocation of the power of love to overcome misery and despair. Never previously performed in Australia, it is paired with the newly commissioned Why do we exist? by popular Australian composer, Iain Grandage.

Sydney Chamber Choir
Orchestra of the Antipodes
Jonathan Grieves-Smith – Conductor

Coming up at the Academy of St. Martin in the Field

Perahia Plays Beethoven at the Barbican

The incomparable Murray Perahia celebrates the genius of Ludwig van Beethoven in Perahia Plays Beethoven, a four-concert series at London’s Barbican with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Over the course of the 2016/17 season, the acclaimed American applies his penetrating intellect and exquisite musicianship to the brilliant German’s much-loved piano concertos, play-directing all five from the piano.

21 November 2016 – Beethoven Piano Concerto Nos. 1 & 3
20 February 2017 – Beethoven Piano Concerto Nos. 2 & 4
7 April 2017 – Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 5 (“Emperor”)

Joshua Bell at Cadogan Hall
19 January 2017

After delivering an explosive unconducted performance of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in 2015/16, Music Director and violin superstar Joshua Bell returns to play-direct the Academy in another iconic masterpiece, Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E minor. Two of Beethoven’s most popular works sit either side: the Egmont Overture, and “Pastoral” Symphony No. 6.

Martin Fröst at Cadogan Hall
2 February 2017

In an evening packed full of infectious melodies and toe-tapping rhythms, the sensational clarinettist Martin Fröst performs Copland’s jazz-influenced Clarinet Concerto, an exciting selection of Eastern European-inspired dances, and three thrillingly virtuosic arrangements of traditional Klezmer dances by his brother, Göran. We have arranged for a discount on early ticket bookings exclusively for you, our e-newsletter subscribers – scroll down for further details.

Amadeus Live
Amadeus Live at the Royal Albert Hall
14 October 2016

Winner of eight Academy Awards, four BAFTAs and four Golden Globes, Miloš Forman’s Amadeus will be brought to vivid life in the world premiere of Amadeus Live at the Royal Albert Hall. The soundtrack – which features excerpts from some of Mozart’s greatest works, including Don Giovanni, Le nozze di Figaro and the powerful Requiem – will be performed live by the Academy.

Choral Classics
Choral Classics at St Martin-in-the-Fields

The Academy returns to its spiritual home – the church in which it gave its first performance in 1959 – to join forces with the exciting young-professional choir St Martin’s Voices for performances of two iconic choral works.

12 November 2016 – Fauré Requiem in D minor
15 July 2017 – Mozart Mass in C minor

On Tour in 2016/17

The Academy on Tour
First details of our 2016/17 touring activities are now also available in our new season brochure, with highlight tours including visits to the USA with Inon Barnatan, Australia with Joshua Bell and Europe with Cameron Carpenter, as well as multiple dates around the Europe with Sir Neville Marriner and Murray Perahia.

Check in regularly at our website for confirmation of our 2016/17 touring schedule and ticket booking links.

Introducing our first Composer in Residence

Sally Beamish
We are delighted to announce the appointment of Sally Beamish as our first ever Composer in Residence in 2016/17, in a partnership set to run until the end of our Diamond Jubliee Season in 2018/19. Beamish, who celebrates her own 60th birthday this season, is one of Britain’s best-known contemporary composers, renowned for her versatility. As Composer in Residence, Sally’s music will be a central part of our programming over the next three seasons, both in the UK and abroad, including past works and new commissions. We look forward to sharing our performances of Sally’s compositions with you over the next few years.

Still to come in 2015/16…

Sir Neville Marriner and Till Fellner
This Friday we celebrate Sir Neville Marriner’s 92nd birthday at Cadogan Hall in a programme of Mozart and Bizet with pianist Till Fellner, before finishing the 2015/16 London season as we started with the Chamber Ensemble in concert at Kings Place. We also continue to tour internationally well into the summer, so keep an eye on the ‘What’s On’ page of our website if you are hoping to catch us on our travels.

Whats on at Newcastle Conservatorium

Music Masterclass: Piano and Keyboard with Helen English & Gian-Franco Ricci

Saturday 7 May | 2.00pm

Open to all levels and ages, join these fantastic teachers for a masterclass,
short concert and afternoon tea. This will be a great chance to meet other
musicians, develop skills and share a love of music.

Voice Masterclass Saturday 25 June
Guitar & Bass Masterclass Saturday 6 August

University of Newcastle Orchestra ‘Symphony and Songs My Mother Taught Me’ ~ a special Mothers Day concert
Sunday 8 May | 2.00pm followed by afternoon tea
The University of Newcastle Orchestra will perform Anton Dvoraks famous Gypsy Song ‘Songs my Mother Taught Me’ as a centre piece of their special Mother’s Day Concert. The concert will also feature two emerging Newcastle artists Ashlee Woodgate (soprano) and songwriter Teagan McCaig, both are past & current students of The Conservatorium. Songs by the icon songwriter Franz Schubert will be sung and immediately followed by an original composition in present day song-writing giving the audience a chance to travel over two centuries and compare the creative essence of the song writing genre.

Flute Masterclass with James Kortum

(Lecturer in Flute, Sydney Conservatorium of Music)
Friday 13 May | 4.00pm
followed by a special Indian Flute performance

Harold Lobb Concert Hall
4.00pm – 6.00pm ~ Flute Masterclass with James Kortum
6.00pm – 6.20pm ~ Indian Flute performance by Conservatorium students

Peter Martin Studio (Please meet in Conservatorium foyer)
4.00pm – 5.00pm ~ Flute Workshop and activities for children
From 5.05pm ~ Children are invited to join the Masterclass and concert in the Harold Lobb Concert Hall

Community Music Scholarship Presentation

Thursday 26 May | 6.00pm

Join us to celebrate the Conservatorium Community Music Scholarship recipients and enjoy a range of short performances by the students.


Newcastle Conservatorium, Sundays @ The James
(James Theatre, 6 Brown Street DUNGOG)
Sunday 1 May | 2.00pm

‘Choral delights’ featuring Callaghan Singers, Conservatorium Youth Vocal Ensemble and BrainWaves Stroke Choir
Cost: Adult $15.00 Concession $10.00 Family $40.00

UniMusic@Lizottes (31 Morehead Street LAMBTON)
Tuesday 24 May | 7.30pm
More information UniMusic@Lizottes

City Recital Hall MOZART REQUIEM: 100 VOICES

29 APRIL – 11 MAY
The most intoxicating performance of the year

Featuring the joyous Handel Hallelujah Chorus from Messiah with 100 voices combined from the Brandenburg Choir and Brandenburg Young Voices.The concert concludes with the breathtaking Mozart Requiem Mass in D minor K.626 with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra and Brandenburg Choir.

“At first there is nothing.
Not an in breath. Not an out breath.

Just silence.

Then it starts. Fast and unrelenting.
Booming and consuming. Uplifting and shifting.
It bursts out of you and fills every inch of you.

Then it stops.

Now it’s slow. Graceful.
It rises up and down. Over you and through you.
A sadness. A nostalgia.

You can’t place it.

But you feel it.”

Australian Brandenburg Orchestra
Paul Dyer AO Artistic Director and Conductor
Brandenburg Choir
Brandenburg Young Voices – Guest Conductor Anne Sandström


Williams Festive Alleluia
Anon Gaudete from Piae Cantiones 1582
Anon Salva nos, stella maris
Palestrina Alma Redemptoris Mater
di Lasso Matona Mia Cara
Rutter What Sweeter Music
Rutter For the Beauty of the Earth
Handel Hallelujah Chorus from Messiah
Mozart Requiem Mass in D minor, K. 626



In his most extensive Australian tour, Piers Lane presents a spell-binding evening of popular works by one of the best loved composers of the Romantic era, in the magical atmosphere of a stage bathed in candlelight.

One of Australia’s most internationally acclaimed pianists, Piers Lane has performed in all the world’s great concert halls and has attracted remarkable reviews for his brilliant and sensitive performances.

Audiences will be transported to a world of enchantment in this very special recital, which is proudly presented by Andrew McKinnon.

Whats on at Newcastle Conservatorium

‘HYPOCHONDRIA AND OTHER MADNESSES’ presented by Thoroughbass
Friday 18 March | 7.30pm

Acclaimed early keyboard performer Israeli-born Michael Tsalka joins Diana Weston and Monika Kornel for a regional tour of NSW in a program for two harpsichords. Michael’s list of awards and achievements is long. Performer on piano, harpsichord, fortepiano, clavichord, square piano and chamber organ, he is also the artistic director of a number of early music festivals and a prolific recording artist for Naxos and other labels. A keen supporter of new music for keyboard, Michael has premiered many new works in his concerts all over the globe, a tradition we continue in this program. Music by Vivaldi, Handel, Couperin, Soler, Zelenka and topped off with a celebratory new work by Ann Carr-Boyd.

Cost: Adult $30.00 Concession $25.00

Purchase online from Thoroughbass or buy tickets from the Box Office one hour prior to the performance

CREATIVE INDUSTRIES: IMPACT, TRANSLATION, ENGAGEMENT: A public lecture by Professor Malcolm Gillies
Monday 21 March | 5.30pm
Public Lecture:
5.30pm – 6.30pm
Q&A: 6.30pm – 7.00pm
Refreshments served: 7.00pm – 7.30pm
Malcolm Gillies considers how the ‘creative industries’ came about, and what their global and Australian prospects are in meeting student aspirations, research benchmarks, industry needs and cultural expectations. He then draws on exciting impact findings arising from the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework, as well as a 2015 study of research translation by Australia’s Learned Academies, and the recent Watt Report on research policy and funding.

Cost: FREE

PERCY GRAINGER AS INNOVATOR: A public lecture by Professor Malcolm Gillies

Tuesday 22 March | 10.30am
Lecture: 10.30am – 11.30am
Q&A: 11.30am – 12.00pm

Percy Grainger (1882-1961) was one of Australia¹s most famous musicians. Although the composer of many folksy short pieces, by which he is best known, he was a serious musical innovator, aiming for a music ‘free’ from fixed pitches and rhythms and ‘democratic’ in its involvement of the whole community. Gillies describes the stages of Grainger’s innovations, pointing out how his ideas sometimes crossed over into other arts and life itself.

Malcolm Gillies is co-author or editor of five books about Percy Grainger, including The All-Round Man, Grainger on Music, Portrait of Percy Grainger, Self-Portrait of Percy Grainger, and Bird¹s-Eye View. A professor of music since 1992, he holds a PhD from the University of London and a higher doctorate in Music from the University of Melbourne. He now lives in London.

Cost: FREE



The Empress of the World, Dame Fortune, accompanies us as we walk together through the springtime. She leads us to a tavern where… the liquor does its work. We gamble, we drink, we sing, we dance, we eat roast swan and, regrettably, drink some more and experience our first taste of remorse…

So begins Carmina Burana, Carl Orff’s thrilling masterpiece. Greed, gluttony, lust and laughter are celebrated with music as bold as it is beautiful. And who better to conduct but Richard Gill OAM, who will bring a new level of excitement to this well-known work.

Plus, hear Machaut’s Messe de Notre Dame, one of the masterpieces of medieval music, its glorious resonances reaching out to us undimmed across six and a half centuries.