Instrumental Music Update

Queensland Symphony Orchestra Latin American Gala

Last Saturday 17 August, 13 Grammar girls took to the stage alongside Queensland Symphony Orchestra (QSO) musicians and under the baton of Alondra de la Parra at Queensland Performing Arts Centre to perform ‘Latin American Gala’. The concert was the culminating performance of the Prossima Program and was an unforgettable evening of Latin-themed concert repertoire. Reviewers, radio broadcasters, QSO musicians and audience members alike marvelled at how brilliantly and seamlessly the girls performed with some of the country’s finest musicians.

Congratulations to Isabella Peters (9E), Samantha Atherton (10L), Sophie Shan (10E), Clare Tian (10M), Lilly Zhang (10W), Lisa Chang (11E), Amy Doan (11M), Aravindi Gunawardena (11E), Hannah Kim (11M), Abigail Lui (11O), Margot Marshall (11W), Viktoria Palka (11H) and Georgia Power (12O).

A live recording of the concert is available to view online.

Choral Concert

The 2019 Choral concert took place at St John’s Anglican Cathedral on Friday 9 August. The audience was presented with an exquisite choral showcase, featuring all Choirs from Years 7 to 12. The evening began with the audience and choristers combining for a rendition of Amazing Grace. Some choral repertoire was accompanied by instrumentalists, Abigail Lui (11O) and Rebecca Groves (12H), who added a beautiful timbrel element to the sounds of the night.

A highlight of the evening was when Sally Grice (9E) conducted her own arrangement of Land of the Silver Birch performed by Vox. The concert concluded in spectacular style with a massed performance of Niska Banja featuring more than 300 voices.

Congratulations to Encore, Chorus, Vox, Chamber Singers, Voices and Chorale on their beautiful performances and thank you to conductors Ms Clare Finlayson and Mrs Wendy Rolls and their accompanists, Ms Kylie Los, Ms Anne-Maree Eyles, Ms Kathryn Sander, Ms Sherelle Eyles and Ms Cara Tran.

Clarinet Masterclass

On Monday 19 August, the Girls Grammar Clarinet Quartet performed at a clarinet masterclass hosted at the Australian Music Examination Centre in Ashgrove. The workshop was led by world-renowned clarinettist, Jose Franch-Ballester.

Lisa Walsham (7R), Clare Tian (10M), Eva Seet (11B) and Jessica Turner (12R) worked on repertoire they had performed earlier that day at the Gillies Ensemble Prize. Jose focused on musicality, phrasing and storytelling and the students worked well to play far beyond the notes and rhythms.

Gillies Chamber Music Prizes

The Annual Gillies Ensemble Competitions for Voice and Instruments took place on Friday 16 and Monday 19 August. These competitions allow students to work in small chamber groups under the guidance of Music staff to develop their skills of performing without a conductor. This year the vocal competition was adjudicated by Voice Teacher, Sarah Crane, and the instrumental competition was adjudicated by Concert Master of the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Mr Warwick Adeney.

Congratulations to the vocal ensemble comprising Abigail Lui (11O), Annabelle Khoo (11W) and Erika Thompson (11W) on winning the Gillies Vocal Ensemble Prize and to Quintet, Sophie Shan (10E)(Piano), Lilly Zhang (10W) (Violin), Phoebe Oats (12G) (Viola), Sarah Taylor (12O) (Cello) and Emily Yu (12O) (Violin) for winning the Gillies Instrumental Ensemble Prize.

Gillies Instrumental Ensemble Prize winners Phoebe Oats (12G), Sarah Taylor (12O), Lilly Zhang (10W), Sophie Shan (10E) and Emily Yu (12O) with Adjudicator, Mr Warwick Adeney.

Guest Conductor for Symphonic Winds

On Monday 19 August, the Symphonic Winds were delighted to work with Conductor and Educator, Mrs Alisa Jones. Mrs Jones has been a Director of the Griffith University Young Conservatorium—Symphonic Wind Ensemble, the Associate Director of the Queensland State Youth Wind Orchestra, and Guest Conductor of the Percy Grainger Orchestra at the Queensland Conservatorium State Honours Ensemble Program. The girls were led through an analysis of their own repertoire and workshopped some of the more complicated motifs, instigating dynamic learning opportunities and promoting a deeper understanding of their programmatic works in the lead up to the Gala Concert next term.

String Festivals

From Saturday 10 to Tuesday 13 August, Brisbane’s most advanced secondary school string players came together at the annual Senior String Festival hosted at Brisbane Grammar School. The Festival Orchestra this year rehearsed and performed Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis by Ralph Vaughan Williams.

The Festival Concert took place in Brisbane Grammar School’s Great Hall where individual school orchestras were featured as well as the combined finale. Under the direction of Coordinator of Strings, Mr Michael Patterson, Chamber Strings performed beautifully and should be commended on their efforts. Thank you to all who participated and supported this event.

Members of the School’s Copland, Bartok and Albinoni String groups joined forces to participate in the Intermediate String Festival, which was held on Monday 19 and Tuesday 20 August. In combination with Somerville House, Brisbane Grammar School and Ormiston College, the 2019 Intermediate String Festival was the largest festival to date, with more than 300 players combining for the finale.

Congratulations to the girls for their fantastic efforts and excellent participation.

Jazz and Percussion Concert

The Instrumental Music Department is pleased to present a Jazz and Percussion Concert on the Year 12 Deck this Saturday 24 August from 2.30 pm. The event will feature the School’s three Jazz Bands, three Percussion ensembles and the Contemporary ensemble.

Audience members are encouraged to bring a folding chair, as well as food and drinks. The Music Support Group will be providing a coffee van and light refreshments will be available for purchase.

Mrs Emma Dron
Instrumental Music Director 

Upcoming Music Events

Junior String Festival Monday 2 September 3.45 pm to 5.45 pm and Tuesday 3 September 3.45 pm to 6.30 pm (6 pm Concert) Gehrmann Theatre