Cello Dreams

ABC 481 1629 The great American cellist once said, “The cello is the most perfect instrument aside from the human voice”. That perhaps explains why arias and other songs lend themselves to cello transcription so well, such as Handel’s arias Lascia ch’io piana (from Rinaldo), Par che mi nasca in seno (from Tamerlano) and Sondheim’s … Read more

The Celtic Songbook

ABC Classics 481 1981 Music of the Celts has always had a huge following, and this disc of 18 songs will find a large audience. Timeless melodies from Ireland, Scotland and Wales are performed by some of the leading musicians in Australia currently. Singers David Hobson, Teddy Tahu Rhodes, Sarah Calderwood, Annalisa Kerrigan, Paul McMahon, … Read more

From Broadway to La Scala

Greta Bradman, David Hobson, Lisa McCune, Teddy Tahu Rhodes ABC 482 3700 Audiences applaud such compilations when four well-known (“popular”) singers are brought together, and a national tour is mounted, making the release of a disc of arias, duets and ensembles, an assured top-seller. Musical theatre selections are from The Sound of Music, The Phantom … Read more

The Secret River

Original soundtrack by Burkhard Dallwitz ABC 481 1824 The recently broadcast ABC TV Mini-series, The Secret River was richly supported by a stunning soundtrack, written, arranged and produced by Burkhard Dallwitz, who is one of Australia’s foremost screen composers. The drama is based on Kate Grenville’s best-selling novel of the same name, which is an … Read more

Sneek Peak at the Ashkenazy Steinway

Audiences and musicians were delighted when world-famous pianist Vladimir Ashkenazy was chosen as the Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in 2009, a post he held for five years. But audiences had experienced the magic of Ashkenazy years earlier, when he toured in recital as a concert pianist in the 1960s. … Read more

Bohemian Rhapsody: Choral Pop

Cantillation ABC 481 0120 Fifteen of the world’s favourite pop songs are assembled here in choral settings that retain all the excitement, verve and vivacity of the original songs. Of course, pop songs set for choir often do not succeed, but these arrangements (by Dan Walker, Sally Whitwell, Daryl Runswick, Ward Swingle and Roderick Williams) … Read more

Truth Seekers, Lovers and Warriors

Joseph Tawadros ABC Classics 481 1632 Immediately captivating, this twelfth recording by the Egyptian-born Australian Oud player, Joseph Tawadros is another extraordinary exploration of styles, blending authentic Arabic instruments and idioms with those of the West. The unusual soundworld created here combines Oud, Accordian, Trombone, Piano, Req (tambourine) and Bendir (drum), the latter two played … Read more

A QandA with Professor Karl Kramer

The following is the complete transcript of questions and the answers given by the Dean and Principal of the Sydney Conservatorium – University of Sydney, Professor Karl Kramer in February, for the purposes of an article to be printed in the March 2015 Fine Music magazine. On April 17, Professor Kramer tendered his resignation from … Read more

Con Centenary

Designed as horse stables for Governor Macquarie, the building affectionately known as the ‘Con’, will celebrate 100 years of existence this year. Now ranked as one of the finest music schools in the world, the Sydney Conservatorium is living up to its founder’s initial objective. Henri Verbrugghen, who was Director from 1915-1921) had a vision … Read more