ANAM opens its 2014 season

The Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) is opening its 2014 season on Friday 7 March with a concert that showcases the exciting and diverse year ahead for these young and talented musicians.

As an educational institution and arts organisation dedicated to the artistic and professional development of young musicians, ANAM has developed its 2014 program to showcase innovation and energy. Over its 19 years, ANAM has invited some of the best Australian and international artists to our shores. This year is no different, with ANAM welcoming a diverse and exceptional collection of artists including world-renowned conductor Simone Young, Israeli improvisational pianist David Dolan and young Venezuelan conductor Ilyich Rivas. 

It also sees the welcome return of former artistic director Brett Dean as Composer in Residence. Composer, conductor and musician, Brett Dean was born and educated in Brisbane, studying at the Queensland Conservatorium and winning the 1982 Conservatorium Medal for Student of the Year. At 20 years of age, he was a prize-winner in the ABC Symphony Australia Young Performers Awards.

He moved to Germany in 1984 where he was a violist with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra for 14 years. He began composing in 1988, with experimental film and radio projects and as an improvising performer. His reputation as a composer developed, and through awardwinning works such as the clarinet concerto Ariel’s Music (1995) and his works for strings, sampler and tape, Carlo (1997), he gained a strong international reputation.

Winning the 2013 Melbourne Prize for Music, the judges’ comments acknowledged his international standing: “Brett Dean, classical composer and conductor, has made an outstanding contribution to Australian music both locally and on the international stage and in doing so has enriched our cultural life.”

Dean’s conducting has been described as “crafted evocative soundscapes with refreshingly clear musical ideas in the underlying accompaniment” (The Age, January 2013). He is one of the most internationally performed composers of his generation. Dean has cited his musical inspiration comes from many sources including literature, politics and visual arts.

Works by Dean have been commissioned by the Berlin Philharmonic, Concertgebouw Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, BBC Proms, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, Melbourne Symphony and Sydney Symphony to name a few.

ANAM’s opening night will feature Dean as conductor and showcase one of his own compositions, Pastoral Symphony (2000). This emotional introduction to his ANAM residency is a reference to the loss of the natural environment to creeping urbanism in the Australian landscape. As Dean describes, “what at the beginning was birdsong becomes by the end, traffic noise within an aggressive industrial landscape.”

The first performance of 2014 featuring Brett Dean with musicians from ANAM is on Friday, March 7 at 7:00pm. Tickets: full $55, seniors $40 and concession $30.

Australian National Academy of Music, South Melbourne Town Hall, 210 Bank Street, South Melbourne.

Photo by Pawel Kopczynski


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