Ensemble Q is pleased to announce its 2023 concert season at Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC), delivering an exciting new series that will take audiences on a musical, visual, and immersive journey.
A new partnership with QPAC in 2022 established Ensemble Q as a Company in Residence, and after a successful debut two-concert season the ensemble will present three concerts in 2023 at QPAC.
Ensemble Q will dive into 2023 with Deep Blue on Sunday 30 April taking audiences to the depths of the ocean with an atmospheric and descriptive program of works that celebrates man’s fascination and love for the sea.
Featuring guest artist, UK-based mezzo soprano Lotte Betts-Dean, the program will include Voice of the Whale by George Crumb, Paul Dean’s The Sea Meets Infinity and Chausson’s exquisite Poeme de l'amour et de la mer.
Back on Terra Ferma for the second concert – Fish, Chips & Warm Beer on Sunday 16 July – audiences will experience a guided journey around Britain through the eyes of the much-loved composer Ralph Vaughan Williams.
The program will explore lesser-known masterpieces by some of the heroes of British music, sandwiched between the beauty of English folksong, and feature works by Thomas Adès, Benjamin Britten, Frank Bridge, Elizabeth Maconchy and Malcolm Arnold.
The Dinner Party will round out the year in style on Sunday 8 October 2023, inspired by an extraordinary dinner party that took place at the opening night of Richard Strauss’ Salome in 1905. The world and its music were changing, and the participants of the dinner party – Puccini, Schoenberg, Zemlinsky, Berg, Mahler, Webern, and Strauss – were at the forefront of this volatile time. For this special concert, Ensemble Q will recreate that evening featuring works by these outstanding composers and welcome guest artist, Australian Baritone, former Opera Queensland Young Artist, and current Voice Performance Fellow at University of Queensland, Shaun Brown.
Co-Artistic Director, Ensemble Q Trish Dean said, “Moving our residency to QPAC in 2022 was always an exciting step for Ensemble Q, but I couldn’t have imagined how positively the change has influenced the way we can now interact with our audience, and in turn how much freedom this has given us to program engaging and immersive performances.
“The Concert Hall in reverse mode (where the audience is seated on stage) is an absolute gift, it brings our audience to us and vice versa, and the sound is incredible. We have designed our programs as all-inclusive events to suit the space, using the back of the hall as a massive backdrop and spreading ourselves over the stage with creativity and artistic flow.
“We are adding visual and auditory elements that will make each audience member feel like they have entered our imaginations and will enhance how they relate to the music we’ve chosen,” said Trish.
“Each program has a strong theme and is equally matched by unexpected elements that are surprising and part of the journey.
“Deep Blue will be so beautiful. We will create an underwater atmosphere that will make you feel like you’ve just dived off a boat into the deepest ocean, to listen to some of the most incredible pieces written for chamber ensemble.
“Fish, Chips & Warm Beer was devised in the Adelaide Hills, after a performance that took us to the beautiful Mt Barker area, so full of rolling hills and green and blue hued vistas that reminded us both of being in England, and of the incredibly atmospheric music of Vaughan Williams. Being lovers of the edginess and creativity of the backstreets of London, and with a great fondness for rejecting the norm, we created what we think of as a musical version of our perfect trip to England.
“And The Dinner Party is going to be incredible, with some fabulous outfits to suit the occasion.”
Co-Artistic Director Paul Dean adds, “Brisbane is my hometown, and I am a deeply loyal Queenslander, so being able to bring Ensemble Q to QPAC has been an absolute joy.
“It’s heartwarming to see our loyal audience come along with us, and so many new faces joining them and asking for more.
“The programs we have designed for 2023 are the natural culmination of many combined years of programming, studying, performing and dreaming. They are thematic, which allows a musical picture to be painted in front of the audience, but we didn’t stop there. My imagination lies largely in composition, but Trish also has a fertile visual imagination so the experience has become an exciting all-encompassing experience that I can’t wait to be part of.
“The Dinner Party is possibly the highlight for me as I’ve wanted to create this event since reading about it in The Rest is Noise by Alex Ross. To imagine all of those incredible composers in one room, discussing life and music at a time when music and the world were going through such huge changes, makes it an enviable experience. To recreate it musically is my dream and I am so grateful to QPAC for supporting this idea.
“Our core members are not only among the best musicians in Australia, but also good friends, so we have a special time on and off stage. We are really excited to welcome a new member and friend to the group, the extraordinary violinist Adam Chalabi, who will be joining us in the second concert. Adam is the first violinist of the Tin Alley String Quartet and Associate Professor at University of Queensland, and we are incredibly fortunate that he’s able to join us all for this Ensemble Q season,” Paul said.
Don’t miss the stunning Ensemble Q 2023 concert season presented by QPAC and Ensemble Q in QPAC’s Concert Hall. Tickets are on sale now at qpac.com.au or phone 136 246. Three-concert packages are available.
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