Home of the Australia Ensemble UNSW partners with Melbourne Digital Concert Hall.

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Image: Prudence Upton

Music Performance Unit UNSW and UNSW Hospitality are thrilled to welcome Melbourne Digital Concert Hall (MDCH) to UNSW’s Kensington campus next month, bringing music to the community. This new partnership will initially see MDCH broadcast six live-stream concerts beginning on 3 June from Sir John Clancy Auditorium UNSW.

The Sydney Satellite Night series of MDCH concerts will begin with Katherine Selby, piano and Australia Ensemble UNSW cellist Julian Smiles, performing Beethoven’s Cello Sonatas 2 and 5, and Baritone Michael Honeyman performing a selection of art song by Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, Strauss and Ravel with Antonio Fernandez, piano.

A recent UNSW graduate herself, MDCH Co-Director Adele Schonhardt is thrilled by the partnership. “Almost exactly a year ago, I crossed that very stage to receive my Executive MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management,” she says. “I couldn’t be prouder of UNSW for displaying such leadership in supporting Australian musicians. My heartfelt thanks on behalf of all MDCH artists.”

MDCH Co-Director Chris Howlett says “we are thrilled to partner with UNSW to enable musicians to continue to share their artistry with Australia and the world.  MDCH enables musicians to continue to make a living through performing but also brings a level of normality and connection for audience members, many of whom are feeling the effects of isolation. We can't wait to broadcast from the Sir John Clancy Auditorium.”

In response to the new partnership, Sonia Maddock, Head of Cultural Networks and Communities at UNSW said “Partnering with MDCH is a tangible way that UNSW can support the classical music industry and provide opportunity to audiences across Australia. We are delighted that other leading performers will be able to come to this fantastic space, home to Australia Ensemble UNSW for over forty years.”


About Melbourne Digital Concert Hall

Launched on 27 March 2020, MDCH has presented over 50 concerts, engaged more than 200 musicians and raised almost $250,000 in ticket revenue for them in its opening months. This partnership with UNSW will enable it to support even more NSW performers.

The concept is straightforward; MDCH broadcasts a range of concerts online with the support of presenting partner 5stream. Each is performed once at a set time, just like a regular recital, and is professionally video streamed at no cost to the musicians involved. ‘Seats’ are sold online, with the full $20 ticket price going directly to the artists themselves. A modest booking fee of $4 covers transaction costs and contributes towards a piano tuner and broadcast technician.

About Sir John Clancy Auditorium

Managed by UNSW Hospitality, and seating 945 guests, the Sir John Clancy Auditorium is Sydney’s Eastern suburbs’ largest public auditorium and the perfect venue for large conferences, lectures, classical musical performances, and recitals. Recently refurbished, the Sir John Clancy Auditorium foyer has transformed the visitor experience.  The premiere feature of the new space is a new entrance canopy with golden copper shingles lining the north, east and west sides of the foyer, highlighting the Mona Hessing Tapestry in a spacious and inviting environment.

About Music Performance Unit UNSW

The Music Performance Unit UNSW is a small team responsible for the production of high-quality classical music concerts on campus. A core of UNSW's cultural life, the MPU manages several primary activities, including:

  • Australia Ensemble UNSW, Australia's leading chamber music ensemble that presents an annual subscription season and free concert and workshop series;
  • Collegium Musicum Choir, an 80-100 voice choir comprising mostly undergraduates but also staff and members of the general community. It presents an annual program of three concerts;
  • Burgundian Consort, a chamber choir of 12-18 voices of high quality young singers. It presents an annual evening recital as well as appearing at concerts of the Collegium Musicum Choir;
  • Large Instrumental Music Ensembles comprising the UNSW Wind Symphony and UNSW Orchestra;
  • Young Artists Concerts and special events.