This is my first report as President of AGSA, and I’m very pleased to say that 2019 was again a very productive and interesting year in the life of the Guild.
The main event for 2019 was the Geoffrey Parsons Award held in the Hartley Room of the Elder Conservatorium of Music on Sunday 15th September.
This is now held every two years and this year we were delighted to have as the chair of the judging panel, David Miller AM, Senior Lecturer in Collaborative Piano at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.
The rest of the panel comprised Keith Crellin OAM, and Diana Harris OAM. Dean Newcombe (clarinettist), as soloist for all the finalists, was also part of the panel.
The four finalists were:
Mekhla Kumar (SA) – associate artist Thomas Marlin, cello
Adam McMillan (Vic) – associate artist Anna Freer, violin
Simón Pazos-Quintana (SA) – associate artist Anna Freer, violin
Stephen van der Hoek (SA) – associate artists Greg Tuske, cello and Anthony Waack, voice.
Stephen van der Hoek – Piano, Dean Newcomb – Clarinet
- JOHANNES BRAHMS: Sonata No 1 for Clarinet and Piano in F minor, Op 120, No 1
First movement: Allegro appassionato
Piano – Piano, Greg Tuske – Cello
- FRÉDÉRIC FRANÇOIS CHOPIN: Sonata for Cello and Piano in G minor, Op 65
First movement: Allegro moderato
Stephen van der Hoek – Piano, Anthony Waack – Baritone
- JOHANN CARL GOTTFRIED LÖWE: Erlkönig [King of the elves], Op 1, No 3
Odins Meeresritt (or “Der Schmied auf Helgoland“), Op 118
Adam McMillan – Piano, Anna Freer – Violin
JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH: Sonata in E for violin & piano BWV 1016, Mvt III: Adagio ma non tanto
CÉSAR FRANCK: Violin Sonata in A, 2nd movement Allegro
Adam McMillan – Piano, Dean Newcomb – Clarinet
JOHANNES BRAHMS: Clarinet Sonata no. 1, first movement
Mekhla Kumar – Piano, Thomas Marlin– cello
DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH: Sonata for Cello and Piano in D minor, Op. 40, movements 1 & 2
GABRIEL FAURÉ: Élégie Op. 24.
Mekhla Kumar – Piano, Dean Newcomb – Clarinet
JOHANNES BRAHMS: Clarinet Sonata No.1, Op.120.
Simón Pazos Quintana– Piano, Anna Freer– Violin
LUDWIG van BEETHOVEN: Violin Sonata No. 9, Op. 47, “Kreutzer Sonata” I. Adagio sostenuto – Presto
Simón Pazos Quintana– Piano, Dean Newcomb – Clarinet
JOHANNES BRAHMS: Clarinet Sonata Op. 120 No. 1 in F minor – I. Allegro appassionato
Simón Pazos Quintana– Piano, Anna Freer – Violin
WITOLD ROMAN LUTOSŁAWSKI: Subito for violin and piano (1992)4
As always, the exceptional standard of the four finalists made the choice of a winner very difficult.
Mekhla Kumar was the winner and as such she won a cash prize of $6,000 and some excellent publicity which will be invaluable to her in her career.
On Sunday 28th April at St Andrew’s School Walkerville, the Junior Ensemble Musicians took part in a Masterclass led by violinist Lachlan Bramble. An enthusiastic group of young pianists joined with an equally enthusiastic group of instrumentalists. And singers to work on and perform a wide variety of music. The children had the opportunity of performing their repertoire in a Lunch time concert in Pilgrim Church on Wednesday 19th June.
The opportunity for young student pianists to rehearse and perform with professional musicians is invaluable. Gina Macri has very successfully run this program for many years now and it is testament to her commitment that so many secondary aged students have been able to use this as a stepping off point for their musical careers. In 2019, the masterclass and first concert were held, as usual, at Marryatville High School. We are very indebted to the Music Department, led by Aldis Sils, for their ongoing support. This year, the masterclass was led by Leonie Hempton. The standard of the students continues to be very high and as always, the students are very enthusiastic about their involvement.
The professional soloists were:
• Joseph Freer (cello)
• Katrina McKenzie (soprano)
• Martin Phillipson (trumpet)
• Samantha Webber (clarinet)
The student performers were:
• Adden Chin 15 years, Yr 10 at Marryatville A(Mus) A level – student of Anna Goldsworthy
• Timothy Howard 17 years, Yr 12 at Prescott College. Gr 8 level – student of Thomas Saunders.
• Naomi Ooi – 15 years, Yr 10 at Seymour College. Gr 8 level – student of Courtney Miller.
• Angela Parson – 17 years, Yr 12 at Seymour College. Gr 8 level – student of Anna Goldsworthy.
• Shayna Tran – 16 years, Yr 11 at Marryatville High School. Gr 8 level – student of Monika Laczofy.
• Vivi Wu – 15 years, Yr 10 at Marryatville High School. Gr 7 level – student of Gina Macri.
• Ellen Zhe – 13 years, Yr 9 at Pembroke. Gr 8 level – student of Won Jung Lee.
5MBS broadcasts for the Accompanists’ Guild provide an important profile for us. Presenters in 2019 were Damien Mansfield, Koula Raptis, Diana Harris and Leonie Hempton. We very warmly welcomed Alicia Duell as Committee Secretary.
Thanks are due to Anna McKenzie for her ongoing work in design and the AGSA website.
Thank you to all the members of the AGSA committee as they have supported me through my first year as President.
Leonie Hempton OAM