Taryn Fiebig | Umberto Clerici | James Crabb | Gregg Arthur | The Sydney Puppet Theatre | Anne Maria Nicholson | Phillip Bolliger | Bridget Bolliger | Enigma Quartet
Taryn Fiebig | soprano
Helpmann Award-winning soprano Taryn Fiebig is one of Australia most popular and versatile artists. In 2017, she sang Musetta (La bohème) for Opera Australia; Michal (Saul) for the Adelaide Festival; major roles in Pinchgut Opera’s Triple Bill and the title role in The Merry Widow for West Australian Opera; in concert, she was soloist with Sydney Philharmonia, Auckland Philharmonia and the Opera Australia Orchestra.
She returns to OA in 2018 in Metamorphosis and makes major concert appearances at the Adelaide Festival, the Huntington Festival, for Sydney Philharmonia and the West Australian Youth Orchestra. 2019 engagements include Despina (Cosi fan tutte) for OA and Selinda (Farnace) for Pinchgut Opera.
Taryn has performed with all the major Australian opera companies, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Australian Brandenburg Ensemble and the Sydney, West Australian, Adelaide and Queensland Symphony Orchestras.
Internationally, she has sung for the Edinburgh Festival (as Lucy Joy in Opera Australia’s production of Bliss), in America for the LA Ear Unit and in the UK with the English Chamber Orchestra and for BBC Radio 4.
In 2004, Taryn joined the Young Artists Program at Opera Australia; she remained with OA as an ensemble member until 2010 before becoming a freelance artist.
Roles for Opera Australia include: Susanna, Zerlina and Despina in Sir David McVicar’s trio of Mozart productions (The Marrigge of Figaro, Don Giovanni and Così fan tutte), Pamina and Papagena in The Magic Flute, Musetta in La bohème, Servilia in La clemenza di Tito, Oscar in Un ballo in maschera, Clorinda in Cenerentola, Lisa in La sonnambula, Belinda in Dido and Aeneas, Aphrodite in The Love of the Nightingale, Karolka in Jenufa and The Woodbird and Gutrune in Der Ring des Nibelungen. Her performance as Lucy Joy in Bliss earned her a Helpmann Award. For New Zealand Opera, she has sung Esmeralda in The Bartered Bride.
A musical theatre highlight for Taryn was over 200 performances as Eliza Dolittle in Opera Australia’s National Tour of My Fair Lady.
Gilbert and Sullivan roles have included The Plaintiff in Trial by Jury, Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, both Tessa and Gianetta in The Gondoliers and Yum-Yum in The Mikado.
Taryn is also an accomplished cellist leading both the Western Australian Youth Orchestra and the Australian Youth Orchestra. She continues to play and appears in concert as both singer and cellist.
Umberto Clerici| cello
Soloist, chamber musician, principal cellist, teacher, cultural innovator: Umberto Clerici’s multifaceted artistic and creative activity can be summed up in these five dimensions.
Born in Turin, Italy, Umberto began studying cello at the age of 5, continuing later at the Conservatoire of Music in Turin. Clerici mastered his art with Mario Brunello and David Géringas, both of whom opened to him new musical dimensions of fantasy and rigour.
At the age of 19 he won the Italian Regional Orchestras contest, and began his career as a soloist. Other international prizes followed: the Janigro Competition in Zagreb and the 2011 International Tchaikovsy Competition (the only Italian cellist in the history of that competition, other than Mario Brunello, to be a Prize winner).
Clerici has played as a soloist all over the world including, among many, the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic, the Moscow Russian State Orchestra, the Philharmonia Wien, the Zagreb Philharmonic, Rome, Milano and Florence Orchestras. He has performed in the prestigious concert halls of Carnegie Hall, the Musikverein in Vienna, the Great Shostakovich Hall in Saint Petersburg and the Parco della Musica Auditorium in Rome. In 2012 he also played Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo theme with the Turin Teatro Regio Orchestra, conducted by Valery Gergiev.
While his solo concerts increased in number, Clerici maintained his chamber music and teaching, finding that these gave him even greater satisfaction than pure performance. At the age of 23 he became assistant Professor at the Salzburg’s Mozarteum Summer Academy.
He joined the Trio di Torino in 2001, but also pursued separate projects with Luis Lortie, Jeffrey Swann, Itamar Golan, Sergej Krilov, Claudio Martinez Mehner, Andrea Rebaudengo, Mario Brunello.
Wishing also to explore the orchestral repertoire and experience a wider music ensemble, Clerici chose to embark on playing in the orchestra, as the principal cellist, with Lorin Maazel’s Toscanini Philharmonic Orchestra. For four years he was Principal cello the Teatro Regio di Torino.
In 2014 Clerici was appointed principal cello of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra (SSO) and Cello Lecturer at the Sydney University. He made his debut as a soloist with SSO in 2017 with his interdisciplinary project centred on Strauss’ Don Quixote and in 2018 he played the Brahms double concerto.
He recorded several CDs with concertos, solo and chamber music and, in 2017, he realised two new solo recordings for ABC Classics.
Umberto plays a 1722 Matteo Goffriller from Venice and a 1758 Carlo Antonio Testore from Milan.
James Crabb| classical accordion
Scottish born James Crabb is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading ambassadors of the classical accordion. He studied at the Royal Danish Academy of Music with classical accordion pioneer Mogens Ellegaard and was awarded the Carl Nielsen Music Prize, Denmark in 1991. He was professor of classical accordion at the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen from 1995 – 2010 and also held a long-standing guest professorship at the University of Music and Dramatic Arts in Graz, Austria. James is currently Artistic Director of Four Winds Festival, NSW.
He has performed worldwide as soloist with the BBC Symphony, BBC Scottish, Sydney and Melbourne Symphonies, Philharmonia, London Philharmonic, London Symphony, Hallé Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, Nash Ensemble, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Swedish Chamber Orchestra, Spatanburg Philharmonic (South Carolina) and El Paso Symphony Orchestra (Texas).
A recognised and acclaimed authority on the music of Astor Piazzolla, James has performed with the original members of Piazzolla’s own quintet. He has directed Piazzolla’s Maria de Buenos Aires both at the Royal Danish Opera and for Victorian Opera.
James’ Piazzolla recordings include, Song of the Angel with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and The Quintets with Richard Tognetti and the Tango Jam quintet. He is also featured in the documentary Astor Piazzolla in Portrait published by Opus Arte. Further recordings include transcriptions of Stravinsky’s Petrouchka and Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, The Siinging (Beamish) with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
In addition to continuing in his role as Artistic Director of Four Winds Festivals, 2019 will see James appear at the Adam Chamber Music Festival in Nelson New Zealand, perform and record the new Accordion concerto The Players, (written for him by Brett Dean) with the Swedish Chamber Orchestra, perform with Dance Company Co.3 in Perth in a new work, “In Line”, give a recital at Music in the Round, Abbotsford Convent, Victoria, perform with violinist Anthony Marwood at Ukaria, play and direct Sinfonia Cymru, Wales and reprise his role in Brett Dean’s Hamlet in a new production of the opera at Opera Cologne.
Highlights of recent seasons include Piazzolla’s Aconcagua with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the Ulster Orchestra, conducting and performing in Victorian Opera’s production of Maria de Buenos Aires, Stravinsky’s Petrouchka with the Tero Saarinen Dance Company in Europe and Asia, the world premiere of a new work by Magnar Am in Oslo and later in Japan, Gubaidulina’s 7 Words with the BBC Symphony, as well as playing this work at the BBC Proms, a Victorian tour with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, performances with the Camerata Salzburg, Australia Ensemble, Sydney Omega Ensemble, Southern Cross Soloists, Black Arm Band and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and at the Peasmarsh Festival, England, Australian Festival of Chamber Music, Adelaide Festival, with the Swedish Chamber Orchestra and Brett Dean in a new Accordion/Viola duo presentation and a collaboration in Townsville, repeated in Brisbane, with Opera Queensland and Dance North on a new project entitled “Abandon”, based on the music of Handel.
Maintaining a high international profile, in 2017 James appeared as guest soloist and director of a new Piazzolla festival in Buenos Aires, performed the Birtwistle work The Last Supper with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and created a major role on stage, written especially for him, in Brett Dean’s new opera ‘Hamlet’ at Glyndebourne Festival Opera, a role which he later reprised at the 2018 Adelaide Festival. He also returned to the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, Townsville and curated the 2017 ‘UKARIA 24’. Other 2018 engagements included a Musica Viva recital in Hobart and performances with ANAM.
James also continues his two exciting collaborations, one with violinist Anthony Marwood and the other with recorder player Genevieve Lacey. Crabb-Lacey’s first recording together with ABC Classics, Heard This and Thought of You was released in August 2015.
Gregg Arthur is an Australian singer and songwriter known for his intimate vocal style.
Originally from Sydney Australia, Gregg travels all over the world performing the music he loves. His training and education are firmly based in the tradition of jazz vocals and the great American Songbook, using his considerable abilities to interpret what he calls the ‘new standards’, pop and smooth jazz classics.
Studying music in Sydney, Gregg honed his vocal skills with famed singing coach Don Graden, studied acting to enhance his singing performances at The Actors Studio and lessons with legendary acting teacher Hayes Gordon, also recording and performing with the great Australian arranger and conductor, Maestro Tommy Tycho.
In the United States Gregg has worked with iconic musicians including the late Vincent Falcone, former pianist and conductor for Frank Sinatra, and the ‘Brush Master’ Clayton Cameron, drummer for Tony Bennett and Sammy Davis Jr. Since 2014 Gregg has been performing and writing with brilliant pianist Tom Ranier, and had a residency with beloved bassist Pat Senatore and his trio at the prestigious Bel Air venue Vibrato, owned and presented by Grammy award winning trumpeter Herb Alpert.
In Australia and the Asia Pacific Gregg tours and records with the cream of the region’s musicians, featuring highly respected jazz masters, pianist and musical director Peter Locke and renown bassist Craig Scott, and introducing young guns Tim Geldens on drums and Michael Avgenicos on tenor sax.
The Sydney Puppet Theatre
Steve Coupe and Sue Wallace are co-artistic directors of The Sydney Puppet Theatre founded in 1984.
We moved to the Southern Highlands, regional NSW, where we built a puppet making and rehearsal studio. We create what we call Theatre of Delight, principally for the family audience incorporating puppetry, acting, music and dance in our shows.
We design workshops for all ages and abilities. We have also created puppetry performances and workshops for various clients the Museum of Contemporary Art, the ABC, the Powerhouse Museum and Discovery Centre, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre, the Roads and Transport Authority, Sydney Water, the NSW Fire Department, the Australian Museum, National Parks and Wildlife and Australia’s Wonderland. We have taught puppetry at the University of NSW and have an ongoing association with the Enmore Design College of TAFE.
Most recently (August 2017) we were commissioned by Nautanki Theatre to create and perform shadow theatre in Jungle Book at Riverside Theatre.
We are currently company in residence at Imagin Arta, the Australian Puppet Centre in Sutton Forest NSW, performing every Sunday and organising puppetry workshops and events.
Anne Maria Nicholson is a prominent journalist, author and public speaker who has worked for many of Australia’s major media organisations, as well as internationally.
For 20 years, Anne Maria was a news and current affairs journalist at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, specialising in the arts for TV News and ABC-24 and also reporting for Foreign Correspondent, Lateline and 7:30.
Anne Maria is also a novelist and has written three books including Weeping Waters and Pliny’s Warning (Harper Collins) and a soon to be published novel set in Manly, Pokerface.
Anne Maria is a longtime Manly resident and in the 1980s was an alderman on Manly Council. She has had a long association with the Manly Art Gallery and Museum and was President of the Society for a number of years. She initiated the ‘Express Yourself’ project to showcase aspiring young artists.
The arts are central to her life and she has been a singer, studied drama and languages and is a keen photographer.
Phillip Bolliger | guitar
Sydney born Phillip Bolliger began learning classical guitar at age 10. He entered the Sydney Conservatorium High School in Year 7, finishing high school there and continuing on to complete a Performer’s Diploma with Gregory Pikler. On a QE II Scholarship, he furthered his studies in Vienna with Konrad Ragossnig and in Basel with Oscar Ghiglia. As a young musician, Phillip won several prizes for his playing including the 2MBS FM Performer’s Competition and was a finalist in an International guitar competition in Neuchatel, Switzerland.
Phillip has performed with various Sydney orchestras, guitar repertoire including Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez and Fantasia para un Gentilhombre, as well as Concertos by Vivaldi. He has accompanied many fine soloists – violinists, flautists and singers, including his flautist sister, Bridget Bolliger, in their duo called ‘Flutarre’. Phillip has also worked as a composer and composed various works, mostly for guitar with other instruments. A highlight of his composition studies was the opportunity to assist Peter Sculthorpe with the composition of From Kakadu for guitarist John Williams.
Phillip has recorded and produced two solo CDs – Latin Journey and Guitarreo – and in recent years has moved to the Southern Highlands where he lives with his family.
Bridget Bolliger | flute
Australian-Swiss flautist Bridget Bolliger has been hailed by Fanfare as “the very essence of what flute sound should be…”.
Bridget distinguished herself early, first performing the Ibert Flute Concerto as a soloist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra at the tender age of 15.
In 2017 Bridget celebrated her tenth anniversary as Artistic Director and Founder of the Sydney Chamber Music Festival and is the founding director of the New Sydney Wind Quintet since 2004.
A performer at the Huntington Estate Music Festival and the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, Bridget enjoys her partnership with the British pianist Andrew West, and in 2016 they gave their debut recital in the Utzon Room at the Sydney Opera House.
Dividing her time between performing, recording, and looking after her two children, Bridget is also a dedicated flute teacher at her own Pittwater Flute Academy. She gives masterclasses around Australia and at playwithapro.com, giving online lessons to flute students around the world.
Bridget has held Principal Flute positions with the St Gallen Symphony Orchestra and the Sao Paulo Symphony, and has appeared as guest principal flute and soloist with several European and Australian orchestras including the Basel Symphony, Zurich Opera Orchestra, AOBO and QSO.
Graduating with a soloists degree at the Basel Music Academy in performance under Prof. Peter-Lukas Graf, Bridget enjoyed a busy and varied career in Europe and South America spanning 16 years with multiple performances of Mozart’s Flute and Harp Concerto alongside some of the world’s greatest harpists including Marielle Norman, Elena Zaniboni and Sarah O’Brien.
Bridget then settled in Sydney in 2004 and soon became a passionate advocate of Australian music. Bridget has premiered several recordings of new Australian works and has recently released a recording of The Laughing Moon by Ross Edwards on ABC Classics.
Bridget’s CD release Dancing Shadows, the complete music for flute and piano by Miriam Hyde, has earned great international acclaim from renowned music magazines such as Gramophone, BBC Music Magazine and Limelight, as has her earlier album Quintopia. Her latest album Timeless, alongside pianist Andrew West, was released this year by Austrian Gramophone.
In her earlier life, Bridget Bolliger pursued a short lived singing career, studying voice at the Music Hochshule of Koln and at the Academica Musica di Bologna, and performed opera roles in Italy at the Teatro Massimo di Palermo and at the Teatro Sao Pedro in Brazil.
From its humble origins as four music students busking on the streets of Sydney in 2006, the last decade has seen the Enigma Quartet carve a reputation on the Australian music scene as one of the brightest and most versatile string quartets who continue to garner acclaim and win over audiences with their vibrant style and eclectic programming.
Holding coveted positions in Australia’s leading orchestra, this intrepid foursome of Marianne Broadfoot, violin, Kerry Martin, violin, Elizabeth Woolnough, viola and Rowena Macneish, cello are united by friendship and a shared passion for chamber music, contemporary music and live performance.