LATE NEWS: Hear Zoe interviewed by Emma Ayres on Grace Notes Lounge http://bit.ly/daA4zb


Our tenth birthday year has started with lots of activity and action.  Changes, professional and personal will be the hallmark of our eleventh season together. Matt got married. Zoe had her first child (Finley). And no sooner had these personal events taken place than we were heading off, at Easter, to Bermagui for the open air of the Four Winds Festival, directed this year by our Reinventions CD collaborator, Genevieve Lacey.

The quartet had other partnerships to forge in the beautiful surroundings of Southern New South Wales, where we basked in sunshine as well as enduring thunderstorms. Fickle weather was no dampner to our spirits, however, as three fantastic partnerships were forged. Not only did we perform with The Andrea Keller Quartet, a jazz inspired ensemble known for their novel approach to the genre , but we also played with contemporary indigenous group Black Arm Band, as well as presenting the first of our east coast Australia tour programs with guitarist Karin Schaupp.

These three collaborations were so different from each other. The Andrea Keller quartet was truly amazing – we always so admire jazz musicians and their courage in improvisation. The Black Arm Band was truly inspirational and the production was of such a high standard. To have everyone on stage – The Andrea Keller Quartet, the Black Arm Band, Karin Schaupp and ourselves, was an extremely moving experience and one we will always remember. It was one of those moments that makes what we do truly worthwhile. What an exciting way to start our eleventh season together!

Our tour with Karin Schaupp was a major undertaking for the two young babies who, of course, had to accompany us. Well may marriages be made in heaven, but we wonder whether future marriages may be made in green rooms.  Zoe’s little boy and Karin’s lovely girl were caught making eyes at one another on more than one occasion. We covered the east coast from Noosa to Hobart with a wonderful program of Boccherini, Schubert and contemporary composers for the guitar, Phillip Houghton and Maximo Diego Pujol. Audiences were enthralled. We hope to collaborate further with Karin in the future, with plans for a CD well advanced.


In just a couple of weeks we have the honour to present to Melbourne and Sydney audiences the premiere of Peter Sculthorpe’s String Quartet No 18.

“I think I enjoy writing string quartets more than anything else” says Peter. He goes on to say this about his new work: “My String Quartet No 18 is an expression of my concern about climate change, about the future of our fragile planet.  I chose to use drought in Australia as a metaphor for this: The work was written from my own deeply-felt experience.  It is made up of four movements: ‘A Land Singing,’ ‘A Dying Land’, ‘ A Lost Land’ and  ‘Prayer’.  The last movement, as in much of my music, provides hope for the return of a bountiful and greener place”.

The work was commissioned jointly by our good friends Peter  and Leila Doyle to celebrate Flinders Quartet’s tenth birthday, and the Edinburgh Festival for the Tokyo String Quartet.

While any premiere of a Peter Sculthorpe work is to be aurally savoured, his love and attention to the string quartet idiom makes this event particularly noteworthy. Zoe expressed the quartet’s feelings with this quote: “To be given the gift of Sculthorpe’s 18th string quartet is a true privilege and we are thrilled to be sharing it with the Tokyo String Quartet. It seems whenever we play Peter’s music, the audience finds such a personal connection. He has the knack of speaking with a unique voice directly to the heart of the audience.”

Other works on the program are Haydn Op 33 No 2 “The Joke” and Schubert’s beautiful A minor Quartet, “Rosamunde” .

Booking details are as follows:

Montsalvat, Saturday June 5, 2.30pm and Iwaki Auditorium , Sunday June 6, 2.30pm. Book through www.m-tix.com.au or phone 03-96855111

Verbrugghen Hall, Sydney Conservatorium, Monday 7 June, 7.00pm

Book through www.cityrecitalhall.com or phone 02-82562222

Don’t forget you can book for lunch at the Montsalvat Cafe on 03-94312681.

DRESS FOR THE OCCASION                                          

While what you, the audience, decide to wear to our concerts should be ruled by your mood, comfort and convenience, Flinders is of a mind to adopt a “new look”. Thanks to a generous donation from the Myer Foundation you will be seeing a combination of Sacha Drake – a fantastic Brisbane based fashion designer – and Monica El-Atm creations at our first concerts.  Sort of a double premiere you might say. This cheerful group, recently together on tour, is a preview of the sort of designs Sacha Drake produces.


Keep your diaries clear for the weekend of 9-11 July. A great weekend of food and music will be presented at Melba Hall. Five fabulous and varied concerts will be presented. Not only will Flinders be playing. Other ensembles include Freshwater Trio, Tin Alley String Quartet, Trio Anima Mundi, Speak Percussion and Ensemble Liaison. Silo String Quartet and the Elandra String Quartet will also join us. All forty musicians look forward to playing for you and meeting with you personally at the Feast Café . Book through 3MBS at www.m-tix.com.au or phone 96855111.


World renowned pianist from London, Paul Lewis, returns to Australia.

“…intellectual rigour and imaginative vigour.” The Daily Telegraph UK

In his third Australian tour for Musica Viva, Paul Lewis takes audiences on an exhilarating journey of the senses. Feel the darkness of Mozart’s Adagio in B minor, explosive passion in Schumann’s Fantasie and watch the sun rise, until it blazes in front of you in Beethoven’s ‘Waldstein’ Sonata.

To win a double pass to the Sydney matinee performance on Saturday 26 June, 1.30pm at the City Recital Hall Angel Place, email your name and address to knowthescore@mva.org.au by 3rd June.

Event details: Sydney 26 June 1.30pm | 5 July 7pm
City Recital Hall, Angel Place
Bookings – cityrecitalhall.com | 02 8256 2222
For further information visit the Musica Viva website


We look forward to seeing you in June at our first subscription concert of the year for a special birthday treat: Peter Sculthorpe’s brand new String Quartet No 18.

Erica, Matt, Helen and Zoe

Flinders Quartet

P O Box 12301, A’Beckett St. Melbourne Vic 8006

admin@flindersquartet.com www.flindersquartet.com

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(Written by JohnofOz in collaboration with the Flinders Quartet)


About johnofoz

An occasional correspondent, with particular interest in music.
This entry was posted in Chamber Music, Flinders Quartet, Musica Viva, Peter Sculthorpe, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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