Some of the finest musicians living in the UK will be performing at Celebrating Australian Music.
Wendy Hiscocks is a London-based Australian composer-pianist who studied at Sydney University with the celebrated composer, Peter Sculthorpe. Australian music is central to her interests; she is completing the first biography of fellow Australian composer-pianist, Arthur Benjamin; her own music has been performed by herself and other distinguished soloists such as Piers Lane, Michael Collins, Elizabeth Connell and Rachel Nicholls at venues as diverse as the Purcell Room in London, the Kusatsu International Summer Academy and Festival in Japan, and the Australian Festival of Chamber Music.
Tom Winpenny is currently Assistant Master of Music at St. Albans Cathedral and can be heard regularly on BBC broadcasts. He has toured internationally with the Choir of King’s College and in addition to giving numerous premières of music by contemporary British composers he has recorded the works of Mendelssohn, Messiaen, Stanford, McCabe and Matthias. Winpenny has recently released a second disc on Naxos of Malcolm Williamsons’s organ music with the support of the British Music Society.
Susan Bickley is firmly established as one of the most accomplished mezzo-sopranos of her generation, with a wide repertory encompassing the Baroque, the great 19th and 20th century dramatic roles as well as contemporary repertoire. In May 2011 she received the prestigious Singer Award at the Royal Philharmonic Society Awards, the highest recognition for live classical music in the UK.
Madeleine Mitchell has been described by The Times as ‘one of Britain’s liveliest musical forces and foremost violinists’. Madeleine has performed many times in Australia and has given recitals at Sydney Opera House, Melbourne University and in Perth, Brisbane and Townsville. A few years ago she was invited to return to the Canberra International Music Festival representing Britain on the centenary of the founding of Australia’s capital and where she performed British, Australian and American music together with a live ABC broadcast. Her concert ‘Celebrating Creative Women’ was attended by Dame Quentin Bryce CVO, then Governor General of Australia.
In a career spanning thirty-eight years the British tenor Christopher Gillett has sung in opera houses across the globe and with many of the world’s finest orchestras and conductors.
In the last few years he has sung at the Royal Opera, Covent Garden, Los Angeles Opera, The Aix-en-Provence Festival, The Netherlands Opera, Teatro alla Scala, Milan, Theater an der Wien, the Aldeburgh Festival, La Monnaie in Brussels, the Peking Festival, El Teatro Real in Madrid, and at the Glyndebourne Festival, with Sir Colin Davis, Sir Andrew Davis, Placido Domingo, John Nelson, Oliver Knussen, Mikko Franck and Robin Ticciati.
On CD/DVD his many recordings include the title role in Britten’s Albert Herring as well as roles in Peter Grimes, Billy Budd and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He has sung A Midsummer Night’s Dream over 150 times, in 3 roles, in 8 different productions. He has also directed the opera for the University of Illinois.
Christopher has given many world premieres, including works by Menotti, Tan Dun, Alexander Goehr and Louis Andriesson.
He has written two critically-acclaimed books, Who’s My Bottom? and Scraping The Bottom and is a regular contributor to the German magazine Opernwelt.