Art Song NSW showcases the beauty of operatic writing for art song by presenting an afternoon of ‘Opera Composers in Song’ at the end of October.
The concert will feature Andrew Greene at the piano with four emerging singers whom he has prepared for the recital. Greene is well known to audiences as a conductor, in which role he has been working for Opera Australia’s current season of Lehar’s The Merry Widow. He is perhaps less well known as a pianist and vocal coach as well as being the Director of Opera Australia’s Moffat Oxenbould Young Artist Program.
Soprano Rachael Cunningham, mezzo soprano Louise Fenbury, tenor Brad Cooper and baritone Samuel Dundas have been working with Greene to present a luscious programme of songs by composers who are renowned for their opera. It is a moot point though that not only did these composers write opera, they wrote symphonies, ballets, chamber and choral works and operetta. The shortened ‘song’ form is a microcosm of their style of writing and challenges them to tell their story in a fraction of the time offered by opera and without any of its other devices like costumes, make-up, other characters and an orchestra.
These are songs that are hardly heard in concert here in Sydney – except perhaps at an Eisteddfod or a voice teacher’s soiree – Mozart’s Piu non si trovano, K. 549 (Notturno No. 6), Das Lied der Trennung, K. 519, Als Luise die Briefe, K. 520, the Baroque inspired An Chloe, K. 524 and Das Bandel, K. 441. Tchaikowsky, Bizet, Gounod, Rossini and Sullivan are also on the programme before the afternoon ends with a selection by Richard Strauss – Allerseelen, op. 10, no. 8, Cäcilie, op. 27, no. 2, Freundliche Vision, op. 48, no. 1, Heimliche Aufforderung, op. 27, no. 3, Die Nacht, op. 10, no. 3, Schlagende Herzen, op. 29, no. 2, Traum durch die Dämmerung, op. 29, no. 1, and Zueignung, op. 10, no. 1.
It is indeed a testament to Greene’s expertise and experience that he will be accompanying every single item in this extensive programme.
If you’re familiar with the operas of these composers, the parallels and contrasts with their songs will be well worth a listen. If you’re not so well versed in them – it will be a pleasure regardless!
Tickets including wine and light supper $30 ($20 conc);
Available at the door or 0411 110 889 or www.artsongnsw.org
SdeS for SoundsLikeSydney