2019 | Season 40

From the Artistic Chair | Paul Stanhope

Life begins at 40

The idea for a resident ensemble at UNSW was initiated in 1979 by Professor Roger Covell and Murray Khouri, coming to fruition in the first subscription season in 1980. Now, 40 years on, we can aver this idea has stood the test of time in style! Like all Australia Ensemble seasons, number 40 has the hallmarks of quality, diversity and variety. We pair something old with something new, and works of the canon beside less-familiar hidden gems.

Music of Mozart and Brahms again features prominently in 2019, as their timeless themes are rightly part of the established repertory. However, we also explore works unlikely to be found in a ‘Top 100’ CD box set: composers Gabriel Pierné and Ludwig Thuille may not be household names, yet their works presented here are fascinating, engaging and worthy of a place in concert programs.

We welcome special guests, mezzo soprano Fiona Campbell and harpist Alice Giles, to guide us through a program of Folksong-inspired compositions. We also welcome back a large range of visiting musicians who augment our core players in this richly diverse Australia Ensemble season. Our proud commitment to new music continues with world premieres by Andrew Ford and Jessica Wells, plus the Australian premieres of works by Americans David Bruce and Paul Moravec. We give pride of place to other local composers including Miriam Hyde, John Peterson and Martin Wesley-Smith in reprising their outstanding music.

Our 2019 season ranges across a great emotional landscape from the romantically sumptuous through to the contemporary edge. Along the way we flirt with popular styles too. It’s a veritable fiesta of music-making, eminently suitable for a significant anniversary. We plan to continue the 40th anniversary celebrations well into 2020. I heartily commend the 2019 season and hope to see you there amongst the loyal followers and new-devotees.

Paul Stanhope, Artistic Chair


Concert dates for the 2019 subscription series of the Australia Ensemble @UNSW:

Saturday March 16, 8pm | The Age of Steam

Saturday April 27, 8pm | No Strings Attached

Saturday June 8, 8pm | Folksong

Saturday August 17, 8pm |  Cool Fire

Saturday September 14, 8pm | Heart * Beat

Saturday October 12, 8pm | Guilty Pleasures

All concerts will be held in the Sir John Clancy Auditorium UNSW