Arts in the Valley President John Wright has confirmed that Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO, Governor of New South Wales, who became Patron-in-Chief of the festival late last year, will attend the Opening Night performance and officially open the festival on May 3 in Kangaroo Valley.
“This is an extraordinary honour for Arts in the Valley”, said Mr Wright.
Award-winning Artistic Director Belinda Webster OAM has announced the program for the fourth Arts in the Valley (Kangaroo Valley 3–5 May, 2013) and festival packages are now on sale.
Arts in the Valley is a biennial 3-day festival combining classical and fine contemporary music with sculpture and Aboriginal performance, in the heart of Australia’s most beautiful valley.
Webster, who received the prestigious Don Banks Music Award from the Australia Council for the Arts in 2011, says many of the concerts in Arts in the Valley 2013 will feature works inspired by Aboriginal themes and the program even includes a real corroboree, possibly the first in Kangaroo Valley since white settlement.
“It’s the first Australian arts festival to explore Aboriginal music and the way it has influenced several generations of Australian composers,” said Webster.
Arts in the Valley 2013 will welcome a symphony orchestra to Kangaroo Valley for the first time. The Sydney Youth Orchestra and the Canberra Youth Orchestra will perform John Antill’s Corroboree and Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring at The Scots College Glengarry Campus.
The signature garden & indoor sculpture exhibition, Sculpture in the Valley, which attracts the work of local sculptors and those outside the area, has become a flagship of Arts in the Valley, and in 2013 will take place over the three days of the Festival at local properties “Wombat Hill” and Graystone Grange”.
Arts in the Valley 2013 will showcase some of Australia’s best musicians performing in solo and chamber works. The program includes:
Corroboree Ballet (Fri May 3) – featuring conductor Max McBride, the Sydney Youth Orchestra and Canberra Youth Orchestra will perform John Antill’s Corroboree, an orchestral ballet from 1946 and the first serious Australian orchestral work inspired by a real corroboree, as well as Stravinsky’s orchestral tour de force The Rite of Spring to open Arts in the Valley 2013.
Meet the Didgeridoo (Sat May 4) – Didgeridoo virtuoso David Hudson in a solo performance and demonstration of the huge variety of sounds this remarkable instrument can make.
Gala Recital (Sat May 4) – two major stars of Opera Australia, soprano Cheryl Barker and baritone Peter Coleman-Wright join Piers Lane, one of Australia’s finest pianists, to present a song recital that will include Strauss’ Four Last Songs.
Hausmusik (Sat May 4 & Sun May 5) – is a series of concerts to be performed in several beautiful private homes in Kangaroo Valley – ‘Barrengarry House’, ‘Sassafras’, ‘Binya Hill’ and ‘Alcheringa’.
- Hausmusik recitals will include:
- Violinist Natsuko Yoshimoto, Concert Master of the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra
- Cellist David Pereira’s solo recital will include Martin Wesley-Smith’s Uluru Song
- Roger Benedict, Sydney Symphony’s Principal Violist will join percussionist Daryl Pratt to perform a program which includes Andrew Ford’s You Must Sleep, But I Must Dance
- Australia’s best resident guitarist Timothy Kain will play a solo recital including Nigel Westlake’s new guitar sonata Mosstrooper Peak
- Riley Lee will play shakuhachi (Japanese flute)
- Joseph Tawadros (oud) will play his own work based on Kahlil Gibran’s masterpiece The Prophet, with Arts in the Valley Patron Peter Thompson narrating the poems
Corroboree (Sat May 4) – the dance troupe from the local Yuin Nation, Yuin Ghudjargah, will perform the real thing – a corroboree – at the Kangaroo Valley Showground. This event is free and open to all.
Valley Dreaming (Sun May 5) – to close the festival, eight outstanding musicians will present a chamber music concert of works by Australian composers who have been inspired by Aboriginal themes, including Ian Munro’s clarinet quintet Songs from the Bush, Ross Edwards’ enchanting Ecstatic Dances for flute and clarinet and Colin Bright’s ensemble masterpiece Red Earth.
Alice in Antarctica (Sun May 5) – Alice Giles went to Antarctica in 2011 with harp and recording equipment to create a work dedicated to her grandfather, Dr Cecil Madigan, a member of the first Australasian Antarctic Expedition in 1911-1914. This concert is a multi-media event with film, location sound and spoken word.
Arts in the Valley is an important economic and cultural event for Kangaroo Valley, contributing significantly to the valley’s major industry, tourism. The festival also deeply engages the local community. Many residents assist as volunteers, schoolchildren from the area are involved in the Festival and makers of specialty local produce showcase their wares at a stall in the village.
Kangaroo Valley is approximately 2 hours from Sydney and Canberra, between Bowral in the Southern Highlands and Nowra on the South Coast.