Piano Alone - Eleventh Hour Theatre - 28 & 29 May 2011

6 pm Saturday 28 May & 6 pm Sunday 29 May
ELEVENTH HOUR THEATRE, 170 Leicester Street, Fitzroy
PIANO ALONE – a recital from six decades
Lawrence Whiffin, PIANO SONATA No.3 (2010) first performance
Australian piano works from the six decades of Astra’s history
Keith Humble (1959), Helen Gifford (1966), Warren Burt (1971), Mark Pollard (1983), Marguerite Boland (1994), Tom Henry (2006)
Michael Kieran Harvey, piano

Astra concerts continue their 60th year of celebrations in 2011 with an all-Australian piano recital given by one of the country’s leading contemporary performers. The program is given twice, in the fine acoustics and intimate space of Eleventh Hour Theatre in Fitzroy.

The pianist Michael Kieran Harvey has been a driving factor for new Australian piano works, both nationally and across the world, since winning the international Ivo Pogorelich Competition in 1993 with Carl Vine’s First Piano Sonata. In these two Astra performances he premieres a large-scale new sonata, written for him by Lawrence Whiffin in 2010, the composer’s 80th year. The new work is itself a celebration of Harvey’s brilliant virtuosity, put to work in a richly varied environment of styles, which extend from the grand contrapuntal tradition of Bach and Schoenberg to a well-known French comic opera tune – with a pervasive sound of chiming bells throughout the work.

The new sonata is set against the background of the last six decades – the 60 years of Astra’s existence. Extending from Lawrence Whiffin’s colleague Keith Humble in the 1950’s to his former student Tom Henry in the 2000’s, the six works speak of changing times and styles, and of the network of personal and artistic factors which are the essence of musical history.

Bookings essential - www.trybooking.com.au/PQL or phone Astra office - 9326-5424