New Local Classical Music Ensemble Gives Australian Premiere of 18th Century Work
New Local Classical Music Ensemble, Opus Collective will give its debut concert at The Church on the Mall, Wollongong on August 17.
The orchestra and soloists led by Wollongong music icon, David Vance (Conductor) will make their concert debut as Opus Collective give the Australian Premiere of Michael Haydn’s ReginaCoeli– Cantata for Soprano and Bass Duet.
The orchestra is made up of undergraduates/graduates of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and also members of local Illawarra groups such as Woolmington Productions Opera Orchestra, Con Voci, Steel City Strings and the Shoalhaven Youth Orchestra.
As well as giving the Australian Premiere of Michael Haydn’s Regina Coeli, the Opus Collective will also perform the moving ‘Ich habe genug’ (I have enough) cantata for bass and oboe by Johann Sebastian Bach with Illawarra Baritone, Jeremy Boulton (Opera Australia Scholarship Recipient) and Zoe Chen (Nanjing Philharmonic Orchestra).
The program will also feature the most iconic soprano cantata of the repertoire, ‘Exsultate, jubilate’ by Wolfgang AmadeusMozart, which will be performed by Jacqueline Ward (Aurora Choralis).
Conductor David Vance explains the significance of the concert taking place in the Illawarra, saying:
"I cannot recall when the Bach or the Mozart was performed in Wollongong in recent years. Perhaps even more significantly, it is likely that this will be the first time Michael Haydn's delightful Regina Coeli has been performed in Australia."
A handwritten copy of the original score of the Regina Coeli by M. Haydn was brought back from Salzburg (Austria) several years ago and has been in storage since, with the work only now being re-copied and digitised for an Australian Premiere. Soprano, Jacqueline Ward explains that whilst the repertoire comes from a completely different time and place, it transcends time and still delivers in beauty and spiritual significance.
"People today are [still] transported to a place of joy, beauty, spirituality, and connection… it has an extra element that goes beyond story and character and that is personal and communal spirituality"
Opus Collective are ambitious to bring more concerts to the growing Illawarra Classical Music scene for Wollongong audiences into the future, including a World Premiere by a local composer in 2020 written specifically for The Church on the Mall. [ENDS]
***ABOUT THE ARTISTS*** [HIGH RESOLUTION IMAGES AND EXTENDED BIOGRAPHIES AVAILABLE ON REQUEST] DAVID VANCE | Conductor David Vance holds honours degrees in English literature (UNSW) and in music performance (Sydney University) and pursued further musical studies as an accompanist and conductor in Italy, Austria and England. He taught at the University of Sydney and the NSW Conservatorium of Music before his appointment in 1982 by the University of Wollongong with a specific brief to develop musical activities on campus. When he retired in 2012 as an Associate Professor, his contribution to the musical life of the university was recognised in the award of an Honorary Fellowship. He has subsequently devoted much of his time to the mentoring of young musicians. David’s conducting experience includes an extensive repertoire of a cappella choral music as well major works for choir and orchestra, including Handel’s Messiah, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Haydn’s The Creation, Mozart’s Requiem, Beethoven’s Mass in C and Rossini’s Stabat Mater, often in association with professional orchestras. David has broadcast and recorded chamber music for the ABC, and remains active as an accompanist with a particular interest in vocal repertoire. JEREMY BOULTON | Baritone Jeremy is currently reading for a Bachelor of Music (Performance) at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Winner of both the Margaret Olive Stewart Bequest Scholarship and the PATIM Fund Scholarship, Jeremy studies with Maree Ryan AM. In the 2018 Sydney Eisteddfod, Jeremy was finalist and runner up in the Intermediate Vocal Scholarship (Dame Joan Sutherland Memorial Award). Jeremy has featured as a soloist for the Opera Australia Benevolent Fund, Opera Projects Sydney and Opera South East. Masterclasses include that by Jessica Pratt. JACQUELINE WARD | Soprano
Jacqueline Ward is a soprano specialising in early music and church music. She is a masters candidate at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, training under Maree Ryan AM, and a scholar at St Stephens Uniting Church. Also a researcher and presenter, Jacqueline is a national award-winning composer and is Associate Director of Aurora Choralis, a new chamber choir that won its first Sydney Eisteddfod premiering her Southern Lights. ZOE CHEN | Oboist Zoe Chen, the member of International Double Reed Society and Jiangsu Musicians Association. She completed her undergraduate and postgraduate studies at Nanjing University of the Arts, with Tong Zhu, and further studied with Conall McCallum in Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She won the Excellent Instructor Award in the Tenth International Youth Art Festival Selection Competition of China and the Silver Award for Oboe solo in the Orchestra Competition of the European Salzburg Music and Dance Festival in 2017 and 2014 respectively. From 2009 to 2013, she held the post of principal oboe of Nanjing Philharmonic Orchestra and Festival Orchestra.
OPUS COLLECTIVE is:
David Vance | Conductor Jacob Antonio | Violin I Tim Talbot | Violin II Jonathan Karanikas | Viola Catalina Dermenjain | Cello Peter Nickolas | Continuo Hayden Burge | Bassoon Bevan Nicholas | Horn I Maya Bongarzoni | Horn II Zoe Chen* | Oboe I Dianne Harris | Oboe II Jacqueline Ward* | Soprano Jeremy Boulton* | Baritone