“The Traveller Without Luggage” – a soldier with no memory chooses between his past and a new identity. Sydney’s finest soloists present a dramatic concert of Milhaud’s incidental music from Jean Anouilh’s classic play, for actor, clarinet, strings, and piano, plus celestial masterworks by Bruch and Schumann, and Australian world premiere commissions, all with the shimmering backdrop of the harbour.
My next series of chamber music and solos visits the iconic Utzon Room of the Sydney Opera House, the charming, intimate Independent Theatre in North Sydney, and the glorious acoustics of the Pitt Street Uniting Church.
After World War I a French soldier remains in limbo, unable to remember his family, home, or even his self. Finally with a single clue to his hertiage he takes a risk to discover who he was decades before. However, he had not considered that there could be memories in the past that would be unwelcome guests in his future, or perhaps that he would be an irresistible symbol for many people of a lost son brought back from the edge of hope.
Written in 1936, the concert centrepiece, the suite from Le Voyageur Sans Baggage by Jean Anouilh, author of landmark theatre works including Antigone and Eurydice. Darius Milhaud wrote sunny, sentimental, and witty music to illustrate the tale of an amnesiac solider trying to find his forgotten place from eighteen years ago. What starts as a light comedy evolves into a heavy drama, meditating on youth, identity, and memory.
In addition to the masterworks of Bruch and Schumann, I am thrilled to be bringing to the performances Andrew Ball, leading young composer and virtuosic contemporary saxophonist from Brisbane, to attend his world premiere. Andrew has a dazzling deft compositional voice, and has keenly turned it from single-reed instruments to the unusual combination of three stringed instruments with piano four hands. He writes solid, riff-based, layered and shifting music, and uncannily changes the timbres of instruments, warping them into a soundscape that will charge and inspire you.
GUEST ARTISTS; Tracey Tsang – violin; Michelle Urquhart – viola; Benjamin Chan – piano; Kian Woo – piano; Andrew Ball – composer; Yoann Bretonnet – actor; James Beach – director
Schumann – violin sonata
Bruch – eight pieces for clarinet, viola, and piano
Milhaud – suite for clarinet, violin, and piano
Kennedy – “Sun and Moon” for clarinet, strings, and piano four-hand
Ball – new work for strings and piano four-hand